Eight Simple Steps to Ease Your Dog’s Anxiety Post Lockdown

Eight Simple Steps to Ease Your Dog’s Anxiety Post Lockdown

For many people, a house is not a home without a hound. And during the lockdown period our pets, especially dogs, have been invaluable in providing companionship, comfort, and calm. Here are our tips to help calm your pets as you return to work after lockdown.

In the depths of the UK’s lockdown period The Kennel Club, which oversees the largest group of registered dog breeders in the country, reported record demand for puppies.

Man’s (and woman’s) best friend has never been a more popular member of our households.
But dogs are pack animals, and that makes them incredibly sociable. Evidence of that is when a dog has an entire sofa to sit on, it’ll often plonk itself down, right next to a human sharing that space.
And it’s that social nature we need to be mindful of as we start to return to work as lockdown eases across most sectors.

Our dogs have got used to us being around a lot more than usual. And they love it. So, when they see us leaving for sustained periods, it can cause them anxiety and distress.
Below are eight simple steps you can take, provided by Petplan pet insurers, that can calm your canine chums.

1) Create a cosy space, such as a crate or bed where your dog can relax and feel secure.

2) Get other family members involved in caring for your pet. If it’s always you that walks and feeds them, they’ll be more closely bonded to you. Teach your dog that he or she can have these things from a variety of people to ease their reliance on you.

3) Calming products such as herbal sprays – or medication in severely anxious dogs – can help relax a dog enough to enable them to learn a different behaviour.

4) Worn t-shirts or towels with an owner’s scent on can reassure a dog when their owner isn’t there. These can be put in the animal’s bed.

5) Ignore attention-seeking behaviour from your dog and try to teach them that attention is not always given when they request it, no matter how persistent they are.

6) Try to prevent your dog from learning shadowing behaviours. Although for many dogs, this is an instinct, intense shadowing may indicate underlying anxiety, so try to avoid your dog following your every move. You can do this by either having another person holding or entertaining the dog, using the wait command, or closing a door behind you. Start with short periods and build this up.

7) Leaving or returning to the house should be done calmly so as not to increase your dog’s anxiety. When returning home, be sure to stay calm and ignore them until they are also calm. Once quiet, ask your dog to sit and calmly greet them. This will help to set your dog’s expectation for when you return home.

8) Don’t assume that getting a second dog will solve the problem. If a dog has separation anxiety due to being dependent on you, the canine company won’t make up for your absence in all cases.

At Carringtons, we love animals and are experts in helping their owners find places they love to call home.

Source: Petplan.co.uk

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