The Best Ways to Prepare Your Pet for Back-To-School Season
Back-to-school season is a stressful time for children and parents alike. It means the end of summer and a change in schedule and new routines. For dogs, this can be an especially trying time: after all, they're not entirely happy about being away from their favorite humans.
So if your pup has started acting more fearful than usual at the sight of you and your kid's departure every morning, take heart. There are ways to ease your pup's transition into the new school year.
Preparing Your Pooch For Back To School Month
The goal is to teach your dog that leaving them alone does not automatically mean you are abandoning him. Here are tips to help your dog be calmer and more relaxed during the back-to-school month.
- Adjust your goodbye routine.
If you have a dog that barks when the family is about to leave, it's possible to desensitize them by going through the motions of leaving and then sitting back down—again and again.
For instance, when you are ready to leave the house, put on your coat and wait another 15 minutes until your dog has calmed down. If possible, go out a different door than normal, so they don't get used to seeing you go through that same exit every time. Give them a treat as soon as possible (before departure)—it'll reinforce a positive association with your departure.
- Keep your departure and return low-key.
Going out and coming back without calling attention to your movements can help a dog learn how to relax. When you come home after being gone—and especially if the dog was upset when you left—ignore them until they've calmed down.
- Give your dog some comfort items and background noise while away.
Leave a familiar item like your sweater or blanket that has your scent and turn the radio or tv on so that the house is not too silent. This will help your pooch feel close to you and let them hear people's voices. Play the radio when you are home as well—this builds familiarity with both entities: humans' voices through the radio combined with your voice.
- Leave your dog some new and favorite toys when you are gone.
Save your dog's favorite and new toys for when you are not around. Only take them out when you and the kids leave the house. That way, your pup will have something fun and exciting to play with while you're away and won't think too much about being left alone by their favorite companions. Just remember to put those toys away when you come home.
- Develop your dog's crate tolerance.
If your dog is accustomed to being in a crate while you are out, it will be less likely to bark or get anxious when left home alone. You can start training your dog to stay in its crate a few weeks before the back-to-school season, and this will give your dog time to get used to being alone in its crate and make the transition easier.
- Take your dog to doggie daycare.
Doggie daycare provides a safe and fun environment for your dog while you and the kids are away. Your dog can socialize with other animals and get some exercise during the day. You can also bring treats or toys your dog enjoys, so it has something to look forward to when you drop it off in the morning.
Bring Your Dog For Playtime At Tk-9's Dog Daycare
At TK-9, we take the safety of dogs in our care very seriously. To ensure that your pet is comfortable and will enjoy spending time at our Daycare facility, every dog must complete an initial Meet & Greet to ensure they are a good fit for daycare. Give us a call or visit our website to book a free Meet & Greet for your dog today!