When COVID19 hit the world, it disrupted everything. Suddenly, people couldn’t go to work, couldn’t go to school, couldn’t go shopping, just to name a few.
And while this came with a load of negative effects it had one silver lining. Dogs got to spend more time with their parents. Now things are starting to go back to normal and there is a general fear that dogs will respond negatively to the change. Having gotten used to having you around, the dog may now have trouble staying alone. Dogs suffering from separation anxiety will exhibit these signs:
- Freaking out when you leave characterized by barking, whining, or howling. This may go on for more than 30 seconds.
- Scratching and eating at house openings in an attempt to follow you.
- Destroying things when you are gone
- Reduced appetite
- Spends too much time grooming themselves or engages in other obsessive behaviors.
To avoid these kinds of behaviors, experts recommend you do the following:
- Set up a room for them free from disturbances where they can have a peaceful time allowing them to relax.
- Encourage activities that can be done alone such as hidden treats, stuffed Kongs, and food puzzles.
- Play them some relaxing music or white noise when you are gone. This will help them from getting distracted by foreign sounds outside.
- Give them treats when they have been a good boy and girl and didn’t cause any fuss while you were away.
Meanwhile, you can start leaving them alone for short stretches of time to prepare them for the time that you finally have to go for a whole day. Adjust the duration that you are gone depending on how your dog reacts.
That should be enough to ensure the sanity of your dog while you are gone. If not then we recommend you consult with a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (CSAT).