As lockdown measures relax and we leave our work from home bubbles how will your dog cope?
After more than two months of working at home and walking from the house for daily dog walks, the easing of restrictions could have a significant effect your dog.
Separation Anxiety causes great worry for many owners and distress for dogs.
Each summer some of our regular dogs take the school holidays off to be with their families and this is a similar situation for dogs. Endless days of company and fuss suddenly comes to a stop leaving the dogs reeling and a little unsettled.
Symptoms of Separation Anxiety include:
1. Evelavated heart rate and hyperactivity before you leave for work
2. Continual barking well after you have left home
3. Distructive behaviours such as chewing furniture
These are my top tips for easing your dog out of lockdown:
1. Reintroduce your routine before you go back to work
Get your dog used to the changes gradually so they have time to adjust to spending time without you. Pick up your keys and go for a short walk without your dog (this is especially important if you have a young puppy who isn’t used to you leaving them). Don’t allow them to sit with you all day while you work from home. Call your dog walker and get them to restart their dog walking schedule to get your dog used to leaving you and spending time with another friendly face.
2. Change up the times you leave the house and extend the length of time you leave them gradually.
3. Don’t Make a big fuss.
When you come home, don’t make a fuss of your dog. Wait until they settle down then praise and reward them for being calm.
4. Allow them to safely socialise
Puppies are missing an important window of time for learning how to socialise, play and greet other dogs. Older dogs too may not have had much doggy contact for the past couple of months and may need time to reaquiant themselves with doggy manners and play. If you have friends or family with sociable dogs and you can walk somewhere safe and socially distant, you could allow your dogs to interact on a walk. Your dog walker is also able to walk dogs in groups now and can help with socialisation and training.
For further advice on separation anxiety and puppy socialisation please call us. We are in the office and our dog walking and daycare services have recommenced.