If you’re getting ready to return to work either after an extended period of working from home, or even after the summer holidays, it’s important to make sure that in addition to finding the iron again, you get your pets ready for you to be gone for the whole day.
Don’t assume that your dog will be fine. Many pets haven’t spent any time alone in the last two years and will find the adjustment difficult. In addition to being hard on the pets, it can be hard on neighbourly relations if your dog barks all day or starts destroying property. This means that you need to start changing things up now so that both you, and your pets, are ready for you to spend long days in the office.
Here are seven simple ways to help you both:
1. Start leaving them and don’t make a fuss.
This can be as simple as going to the shops for half an hour and leaving them to their own devices. If your dog has never spent any time alone, you might want to let the neighbours know that you’re going out so they can let you know if there has been constant barking or any other signs that your pup was, well, NOT HAPPY JAN. Don’t make a big fuss about leaving or returning. Increase the amount of time you leave them on their own.
2. Give them space
Firstly, even when you are home, leave your pets alone. Don’t keep up a constant stream of chatter letting them know that you’ll be right back, or insisting on procrastination cuddles. Just go about your business and let them go about theirs. Secondly, create a space which makes them feel safe and comfortable and is theirs and theirs alone. An established space of their own is important if you don’t want them tearing up yours.
3. Switch up your exercise routine
If your pets are used to being walked several times a day, you need to switch this up in advance to make sure they are going on a long, totally knackering walk in the morning before you head off. This will help avoid any of the destructive or behaviours that dogs indulge in when they’re feeling anxious. Depending on the size of your dog and their needs, you might even need to consider employing a dog walker.
4. Stock up on toys and activities
Nobody likes being bored. Make sure you have toys and activities which will keep your pets entertained when they’re not having long naps and living their best life lying in the sun by the back door. Even better, combine the entertainment with some doggylicious calming peanut butter to help keep them totally zen.
5. Meal plan like a boss
Make sure there is plenty of food and water for your pet to consume. Ensure that you are feeding them nutrient dense meals and have a look at our curated selection of supplements specifically for anxious pets.. A firm customer favourite is this hemp based supplement specifically designed to help dogs that are stressed.
6. Be cool
When you come home at the end of the day, greet your BFF (best furry friend) calmly. We absolutely get that you’ve missed each other, but over the top reunions reinforce to your pet that you’ve been away. Remember all that you learned when you trained them and focus on rewarding good behaviour. This might mean getting them to ‘sit’ before you give them all the cuddles and tummy rubs they’ve been craving.
7. Make time for them
It can be tempting when you get home to just collapse on the couch and relax. However, in the same way that your partner or kids like to have your attention so do your pets. Take them for a walk, tell them how good they are, and then make room on that couch for post dinner cuddles. That way you’ll be able to blame them for the smells and snoring in good conscience.
Finally, don't forget about our Anxiety Wellness Pack - making looking after your pups needs as easy as 1, 2, 3.
THE WONDERPETS TEAM xx