French bulldogs are so-called velcro dogs.
What does that mean?
Velcro dogs are clingy and often suffer from separation anxiety. Why are Frenchies like that?
It’s in their genetics. Namely, French bulldogs were bred to be companion dogs and depended on their human owners. They thrive on attention and feel best when you’re around.
Besides, dogs are social animals. They used to live in packs and do not feel comfortable when alone. In your case, your Frenchie perceives you as a leader of the group and feels secure and protected when you’re around, wanting to follow you wherever you go.
Finally, separation anxiety can be caused by a lack of physical and mental exercise. If you play with your dog or take a long walk before leaving them alone for a couple of hours, your dog is less likely to feel anxious.
So, what can you do when you notice that separation anxiety is a problem for your Frenchie?
There are numerous methods you can use to relieve separation anxiety in dogs. The main goal is to teach your Frenchie how to stay entertained while you’re not around. It may seem difficult in the beginning, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Dog toys can be beneficial. That’s why today we’ll answer the question:
What are the best separation anxiety French bulldog toys?
Separation Anxiety In French Bulldogs
Okay, first things first. You need to familiarize yourself with separation anxiety in dogs before you can do anything to address it – and that’s what this section is all about!
What Is Separation Anxiety?
You are your Frenchie’s pack, and when you are not around, your pooch is likely to exhibit some degree of discomfort, referred to as separation anxiety.
No one can tell you – not with absolute certainty, anyway – why your Frenchie has developed separation anxiety.
Still, you should remember that your puppy’s behavior is not an attempt to punish you for leaving them alone or seeking your attention. It’s a genuine expression of distress and panic.
When Does Separation Anxiety Usually Occur?
Separation anxiety typically kicks in once your Frenchie has to stay home alone for a more extended period. It could also be triggered by a sudden death of their owner, another family member, or another pet your Frenchie is attached to, as well.
Dogs can feel abandoned when you go on a vacation or are absent for a few days. It doesn’t matter if you leave your Frenchie in good hands; you’ll still be greatly missed.
If you’ve adopted a dog that already had an owner or was left in a shelter, you can expect them to have separation anxiety issues for obvious reasons.
Older French bulldogs are more likely to become clingy because they start losing their sense of hearing and vision. This change is stressful for our little canine friends – and they tend to stick closer to their owners.
A dog can also become “Velcro” when not given enough separation anxiety toys. It might sound silly, but having a favorite toy genuinely helps our furry friends cope with their owner’s absence.
What Are The Most Common Symptoms Of Anxiety?
The symptoms of anxiety vary from dog to dog and have a lot to do with your Frenchie’s general character and upbringing.
Some of the most common signs are:
- Digging and scratching at doors, walls, or windows; it’s your pup’s way of attempting to escape and reunite with you
- Destructive chewing of furniture or your things (usually shoes and slippers)
- Excessive howling, barking and whining
- Uncontrolled urination and defecation due to distress (if this is the only symptom you’ve noticed, your dog might have some health issues that need to be addressed by the vet)
The listed modes of behavior are most evident when you start preparing to leave the house and immediately after you’re gone.
Most dogs calm down after some time – but you can expect another burst of emotion upon your return. Most dogs act all excited when reunited with their owner, no matter how short they were apart.
So, expect to be chased from room to room for at least five minutes.
How Should You Treat Separation Anxiety?
- Try to act cool when you’re about to leave your Frenchie home alone. Do the same when you return. Don’t say “Goodbye” or pet your dog, nor take them into your arms as soon as you get back. Wait for your Frenchie to calm down to show affection.
- Make sure that your Frenchie has their home within the home – a place where they can relax and feel secure while you’re gone. It’s best to leave a part of your clothes there as your smell will comfort Frenchie while you’re away.
- In cases of more severe anxiety, you might ask your vet to recommend some calming products.
- Young puppies that are yet to adjust to your home should best be taken to a pet daycare or left with a friend or a family member you trust.
- If your Frenchie destroys your furniture and belongings, you should restrict them to one room. The room should not be dark or empty. In the best-case scenario, it should be the room in which your Frenchie spends a lot of time.
- Your Frenchie should have some interactive toys to play with when alone.
How Not To Treat Separation Anxiety?
First of all, never punish your dog.
Your Frenchie’s not to blame for feeling stressed. In your French bulldog’s eyes, being without you is the greatest punishment they could receive.
You should also restrain yourself from:
- Adopting another dog to keep your Frenchie company. That never works because your French bulldog is not lonely – they are attached to you.
- Crating your dog. It’s a two-way street – even though it helps in some situations, in this case, it can make your Frenchie even more anxious and eager to escape.
- Obedience training. It’s not helpful because your dog isn’t disobeying you here; they’re just anxious.
What Is The Role Of Separation Anxiety Toys?
Your Frenchie is an extraordinarily curious little creature. We bet you have noticed that from the first day you brought your puppy home.
For this reason, Frenchies thrive from playing with all sorts of toys.
When dealing with separation anxiety, you should opt for interactive toys that will stimulate and captivate your dog’s unique senses.
The best separation anxiety French bulldog toys can entertain your dog for hours. For example, a toy that makes your Frenchie work for a treat will keep your dog occupied even when no more treats are left. Hope dies last, as they say.
Many medical studies proved the effectiveness of different dog toys in relieving canine stress and anxiety.
For instance, a swaddling jacket’s been confirmed to ease a dog’s anxiety by providing constant pleasant pressure on its body.
What Separation Anxiety French Bulldog Toys Should You Choose?
First-time owners often buy the toys they like, but experienced dog parents already know what their dogs enjoy.
Don’t worry if you’re a rookie; you’ll get the hang of it soon enough.
That said, the toy you buy for your Frenchie must be of an appropriate size and shape. In this way, your pup will be able to carry it around, chew it, and paw at it.
The next step is to observe your pet’s mood and actions when you play together and determine which toy is their favorite.
It’d be best to consult your vet – or a dog behavior specialist – to recommend a few toys that have been established as best in the treatment of separation anxiety. You can then offer them to your Frenchie and see which one they enjoy the most.
We’ve asked around and found out that interactive food eggs and different treat-dispensing balls are often French bulldogs’ top picks.
These toys will help you with separation anxiety and get you through different training aspects – as well as the notorious teething phase.
Be persistent even if your Frenchie doesn’t figure out how interactive toys “work” right away and seems frustrated by that.
You can help your dog learn new skills and become better at problem-solving. And in time, your Frenchie will build self-confidence – and become more interested.
Finally, our advice is to always opt for a toy that includes some food. Feeding toys are the best at creating positive associations.
Give your Frenchie toys filled with their favorite snacks, and let them play with them while you’re around. Once your puppy falls in love with them, they might not even notice when you are gone!