Seeing as other people have been asking for behavioral help in here, I guess it's not off-topic. And my goodness, but do I need help. My family had a dog or two when I was a kid, but I've never had a dog of my own, and my spouse has no dog experience at all.

I got a new dog from the shelter two days ago. She's a sweet little mutt, about three years old. Already house-trained, eager to please, happy to bond with me immediately...

Well. That's the problem. She's bonded with me so damn hard that she doesn't want me out of her sight. She follows me from room to room, which is sweet until I need to go to the bathroom, or take out the trash, and she sits anxiously in front of the door until I return. Longer than about a minute, and she starts whining, and then barking. I tried putting her outside in the (fenced, secure, with water dish) back yard for ten minutes so I could take a shower, and gave her a new chew before I left. When I closed the door, she was happily working on the chew; by the time I got in the shower, she was wailing for me.

I've been reading up on separation anxiety, and grateful that at least she's not destroying things. (Yet.) But I don't know how to cope with this. I didn't get more than two hours of sleep the first night, because we crated her and she cried most of the night; last night I slept on the couch with her, just to keep her quiet, and while she was happy, I only got a few hours myself.

I can't let her into the bedroom; the terrified cats have decided to hide out in there. (She's not cat-aggressive, but if they flee, she will chase, and we're trying to help them calm down. One of my cats has retreated to the top of the bedroom closet, and just sits there for hours now.) I can't sleep well on the couch. I've been trying to get her to associate the crate with Happy Things again, by tossing treats in there, but she'll only stretch in far enough to eat the treat and then back out again quickly.

I need to go to the grocery store. And the library. And occasionally shower, and pet my cats. And I'm so amazingly exhausted on this little sleep that I just want to break down in tears. The spouse helps when he can, but she hasn't bonded to him; she'll still cry by a door I went through if he's present and trying to distract her.

Someone, please, tell me it gets better. And how to cope. I cannot deal with a dog that needs 24/7 attention. I can take her for walks, I can feed her and brush her and play with her... But at some point I need to be able to leave her alone! Some point soon, before I get so tired I do something terrible.