One of the blessings that came from everyone sheltering in place during the Pandemic is that we all got to spend more time with our fur babies. They loved having you home more. They got used to having you home more. That means that they now have to get used to the fact that you’ll be away more. Some of you may be experiencing the fact that pets who normally did not exhibit signs of separation anxiety are now having a hard time with their pawrents going back into the office all day.
They miss you. That’s sweet, it is certainly nice to be missed but it also means that your pet is uncomfortable while you are away at work. Pets can become agitated, stressed out, and even destructive. Your pet can even experience loss of appetite. Some dogs become much more vocal and bark all day while you are gone. None of these things are good for your pet’s long-term health.
Here are two tips for helping your dog acclimate to you being away again and helping to calm their associated anxiety.
Tip 1: Keep Pets Occupied
Puzzle games where your pet has to work a bit for the snack and Kong toys are great ways to occupy your pet for 20-30 minutes while you’re away. They will be preoccupied with their little snack and likely not realize that you’re gone or at least not be as stressed at the fact that you’re gone because they have something that they love doing to keep them busy.
Tip 2: Inch Your Way up to 8 Hours
If you know your pet has anxiety or suspect that anxiety might form, begin with small trips. Go work from a coffee shop or a co-worker’s house for 2-3 hours a day every day for a week. You can begin to inch up the amount of time you are away each week until your pet gets a little more used to you being out of the home.
Bonus – it may also help you get a little more acclimated to being away from home, interacting with more people face to face, and help you get back into the swing of things.
We understand that everyone does not have the luxury of inching their way up to being away eight hours a day. If you’re already back to work and need a little help with your pet’s separation anxiety, our team is happy to stop by for a mid-day visit. Each visit is about a half-hour long but you can always reserve more time. While we’re there, we can do all the normal things like potty time, playtime, and snack time. We can also set your pet up with an activity to help occupy a bit more of their time.
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