It happens every Fall.
The kids go back to school leaving their “canine sibling” at home. All summer long, they played together, ran together, and rested together. Especially with the virtual at-home instruction due to COVID, “Buddy” became very comfortable with his “pack” on the stay-at-home order. Now he watches as his BFF’s go out the door without him. To prevent Doggy Depression, check out these 5 ways to help ease the isolation, and make it up to your canine friend!
1. The all-exciting car ride!
Of course, a nice long walk when you get home is great, but your dog just wants to be WITH you. Do you have errands to run at a store that allows dogs? Take your dog with you! Often, home supply stores will allow dogs. Or you could go to a pet supply store and buy your dog a special toy! Go anywhere your dog would enjoy. Simply making a change in his environment can be stimulating. Make sure he can show good public behavior, and keep him or her on a 6’ leash!
2. Invite your dog’s BFF to come over!
If you have an energetic dog that has been cooped up all day, giving him the chance to romp around can be a lot of fun. You also might enjoy the benefit of hanging out with other people who love their dogs as much as you you do! Always choose a playtime buddy that fits your dog’s energy level and personality. If his playdate causes fear or aggression in your dog…it’s time to look for another buddy! This should be a relaxing event-not a time to be learning coping skills.
3. Take your dog to dinner
After work or school, you might need a break from cooking. Why not choose a restaurant with outdoor seating that accepts dogs? If you cannot find one in your area, pack up a picnic and go to a nearby park. Food + outdoors+ his pack leader…what could be better?
4. Do some dog training.
Work on foundation training such as walking nicely on a leash or no jumping. Or teach him a fun trick, like frisbee retrieving. This will build a strong bond with your dog as he desires to work with you. Whether you do this within a training class or learn at home, it’s great quality time you both will appreciate. And don’t forget to TREAT your dog! Giving him delicious and wholesome treats, especially when you train (at home) will perk up ANY dog to participate!
5. Have some one-on-one time
Just sit side by side with your dog. If your dog is a cuddler, sit together on the couch. Or simply look at him in the eyes and tell him what a good dog he is! Just plain sitting together, petting and touching can do a world of difference to him, and might even bring your own blood pressure down!