Separation anxiety in a Boxer

Our question this week was:

Recently I adopted an eighteen-month-old Boxer from a breed specific rescue group. I was told that the dog suffered from a mild separation anxiety. True to fact he does indeed suffer from separation anxiety; however, mild is an understatement.

As of yet I don't have a story and I am very new to your site; therefore, you may have indeed discussed this disorder on various occasions. What I am most interested in learning is the outcome of this disorder. Can dogs successfully overcome the behaviors associated with SA? What is your opinion?Thank you,

Jan Coyle – London, Ontario


Hi – thanks for your email. I'm sorry to hear about the separation anxiety in your boxer. I think this is one of the most frustrating behavioral problems in dogs.

Your question is about the outcome – can dogs successfully overcome the behaviors?

Well, I think with a lot of work, patience and time, it can be successfully overcome. Often pharmaceutical treatment is also required. Do dogs every make a 100% complete recovery? To be honest, not in my experience. It seems to be something dogs and owners struggle with their entire lives.

I'm not a behaviorist and have less experience with this condition than does ..say Dr. Alice Moon Fanelli and Dr. Nicholas Dodman who are behaviorist. An article written by a behaviorist that might be helpful is "Separation Anxiety in Dogs".

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

To read most recent questions Click here!

Click here to see the full list of Ask Dr. Debra Questions and Answers!