How to prepare your dog for when the Coronavirus lockdown ends

lockdown

For over two months we’ve spent a lot of time at home, and as lockdown starts to ease and we slowly return to a ‘new normal’ our dogs will have to get used to us being away for longer periods of time again. For some dogs, the transition will be easy, but others, especially those who have suffered with anxiety in the past will find it difficult adjusting to another sudden change to their routine.

Here are some top tips to help prepare you for the transition and prevent separation anxiety:

Practice separation in short bursts

Get your dog used to the idea of your absence by leaving them alone for short bursts of time, gradually increasing it daily over a period of one to two weeks until you reach the full eight hours of a working day. This will reassure the dog that you will return.

Provide entertainment

Boredom could play a part in your dog’s separation anxiety. In order to prevent this boredom when you’re back at work, provide them with plenty of toys to keep them entertained – food mazes and food related toys are often popular.

Don’t make a fuss

Don’t make a fuss of your dog when you leave or return home, when you come back in, wait until your dog settles and then reward your dog for settling down.

Say goodbye well before you leave

If you like to say goodbye to your dog, say your goodbyes at least thirty minutes before you have to leave the house. This means that your dog will get your appreciation and attention but won’t associate it with the imminence of your absence.

Calming Products

There are a number of calming products that can be used alongside environmental changes. Supplements like Zylkene help to promote the feeling of relaxation. Or, if your dog isn’t keen on tablets, Adaptil diffusers are scientifically proven to help anxious dogs. The pheromones they release help dogs feel safe, calm and secure.

Every dog will require different levels of help when it comes to reducing their anxiety. However, taking these steps could make a difference. As with any pet health concerns, mental or physical, you should always seek veterinary advice.

 

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