Common dog behavior problems include excessive barking, digging, chewing, inappropriate mounting and indoor elimination, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. More serious and potentially dangerous behavior issues include chasing cars, biting and other aggressive actions toward people or other animals.
Behavior problems are a leading reason for relinquishment by owners to animal shelters, says Cesar's Way. Unfortunately, abandoning a dog can lead to further anxiety for the animal and trigger more intense misbehavior. Furthermore, dogs with behavior problems are harder to place in new homes. Consequently, they may spend excessively long periods of time in shelters.
Although most dog behaviors can be successfully managed through training, separation anxiety may require a veterinary consultation. Separation anxiety is frequently an underlying cause for serious dog behavior issues, reports the ASPCA. As pack animals, dogs may experience intense anxiety when left alone. Fear of being separated from owners may manifest as excessive vocalizing and destruction of windows and doors as the dog attempts to escape. In extreme cases, dogs may resort to self-harm such as gnawing paws and breaking teeth on door and furnishings. In these instances, medication may be required to help keep the dog calm during solitary periods at home.