If you haven’t considered it yet then you should start to think about what is going to happen with your dog once this lockdown is over and everyone goes back to their daily lives. Most of us don’t see our dogs during the day because of work or the kids being at school, but the last 3 months has seen us all at home with them and that is something which they will of course have grown accustomed to.
Personally I am rather frustrated based on the fact that we just managed to get our dog over his separation anxiety at the end of last year, thanks to the help of the team at All Creatures Veterinary Center, which now we’ll probably have to do all over again. Should your dog find it difficult when things get back to normal, here are some tips on helping them to get over it, and you can start some of it now.
Your dog will need to learn to be on their own again and to feel comfortable and at ease with their own company. A great way in which you can get started on this now is to leave them in a room on their own, whilst you are still in the house. For best results you should be looking at slowly increasing the amount of time which they have on their own, starting with 30 minutes and eventually increasing it up to a couple of hours. The more that you can do this the more your dog will be used to their own company.
They say that if your dog can get past the first 30 minutes or so after you have gone that they should be alright on their own. For this reason I would recommend that you invest in a chew toy which slowly releases treats as the dog plays with it. These toys are inexpensive to buy and you pack them up with treats that your dog loves. As you walk out of the door toss the toy on the ground and your dog will have a good time playing with it as the treats gradually fall out. It takes my cocker spaniel at least 30 minutes to get all the toys out, just enough time for her to forget about me.
Grand Opening, Grand Closing
Something which I didn’t learn about until last year was the fact that a big hello or a grand goodbye is not something that helps your dog at all. The reason for this is that you are making it a big event and that gives them something to look forward to. When you leave simply walk out the door and when you come back home, leave it 15 minutes before you start playing with or greeting the dog.
These seem 3 simple tips but they worked really well for us when we tried them last year, and hopefully they can work for you too.