What a year it has been for both humans and canine friends alike. Now, as many of us are winding down our work-from-home lives and returning to the office, our dogs must adjust again to our being absent throughout the day, similar to when they were young pups. To make sure the transition is not so “ruff,” we’ve jotted down some tips from the American Kennel Club to help your dog through separation anxiety.
Establish a comfortable space
Give your dog a designated safe space in your home that they can make all their own. Within this space, and in the days leading up to your daily departures, feed your pup meals, play with them, bring them their favorite toys, set up a Lennypads potty pad, and allow them to gradually spend time alone. This will allow your pup to be acquainted with their special space when you are away, establishing a place in your home that feels the safest and most familiar to them when you’re not around.
Make happy associations
When leaving, give your pup their favorite toy or treat so that they associate your leaving with something they love and enjoy. Of course, this is nothing compared to the love they have for you, but a treat or their favorite toy can make them feel better when you leave for the day. It can also keep them occupied and busy for some time.
Schedule walks throughout the week
Scheduling walks for when you get home gives your pup something to look forward to all day, that and lots and lots of puppy snuggles! By the time you get home, your pup will be excited to see you and to get outside and play. Scheduling this time throughout the week and being consistent is an important part of their lives as it will be for yours.
If symptoms of separation anxiety progress or get out of hand, talk to your veterinarian and consider enrolling your pup in doggy daycare with professional dog-sitters. While you’re away, don’t forget to set up a potty pad, such as Lennypads, to further ensure your dog’s comfort. And remember, you can do this!