Dog with separation anxiety growls at owner

Hi Cesar!

My little Frankie is three years old. I have had him since he was born. I have never had a problem with his behavior until the past few months. It seems every time that I leave the house to go to work or go out on the weekends to run errands he gets upset. He does not destroy anything in the house, but when I go over to him to say to goodbye and pet him right before I leave the house he growls at me. The first time it happened I was shocked and let it go. But now it occurs all the time, and I am not sure how I am supposed to handle this aggressive behavior. Can you tell me why all of sudden he would have changed his behavior? Is it a reaction to something I am doing or maybe not doing?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

C. DiPalo
Long Island, NY

Cesar’s advice for aggressive dog separation anxiety

Hello DiPalo,

When your dog growls at you as you approach, he’s already showing you “I’m tense, I’m nervous, I’m fearful, I’m unsure,” and if you continue to move forward, this reaction will only intensify. The best thing we can do for a dog in this state of mind is to give them space – to ignore that aggressive behavior; let him deal with it and eventually, because you’re not nurturing it, it will go away. Remember, when we say “goodbye” to our dogs before we leave, it’s often to fulfill our own, very human feelings of guilt and anticipation. If you can’t help yourself and you must say goodbye, try to say goodbye earlier, before he is in that troubled state of mind. This way, you’re fulfilling your own need to love your dog without encouraging the unwanted aggressive behavior that you’re seeing when you say goodbye right before you leave for the day.

Stay calm and assertive,

Cesar Millan


More From Cesar's Way Videos

Recommended Videos


Related Posts

September 28, 2020

Top 5 Myths About Shelter Dogs

Part of Cesar’s mission is to promote rescue, rehabilitation, and re-homing of dogs. There are

July 24, 2020

Golden Retriever Steals Dad’s Seat And Refuses To Give It Back

The running gag on The Big Bang Theory whenever someone was sitting in Sheldon’s spot

June 18, 2015

5 Halloween Dangers for Your Dog

Watch out for some scary Halloween dangers for your dog. When you prepare for possible

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Tips From Cesar & The Pack

Don’t get left out of the doghouse! Sign up now to make sure you’re up to date on the latest happenings!

Trending Today

Trending This Week