For most people, August means two things. In addition to summer winding down, it’s also the time of year when both kids and parents are making the transition back to a school schedule. Since there’s often a lot involved in making this transition, it’s easy to overlook the impact it can have on every member of a family. Specifically, many owners aren’t aware that this transition can trigger separation anxiety in dogs. Because we know that no dedicated owner wants their beloved pet to feel upset, we want to dig into the specifics of this issue, as well as what you can do to combat it.
Separation Anxiety in Dogs 101
According to data compiled by Tufts University's Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, a full 20% of the eighty million dogs who live in the United States suffer from separation anxiety. It’s worth noting that for dogs in the senior age category, that figure increases to 29-50%.
How do you know if the back to school shift causes your dog to experience separation anxiety? The most common signs of this condition include obsessive barking or whining for long periods of time, chewing furniture, shredding paper, house soiling or ripping the stuffing out of pillows. If your dog generally doesn’t do these kinds of things but suddenly starts exhibiting any of the signs, you shouldn’t punish them for their behavior. Instead, you need to take the right steps to help them deal with the separation anxiety they’re likely experiencing.
4 Ways to Help Manage Canine Separation Anxiety
The first thing to do is try to minimize how long your dog is at home alone. If you or your partner can come home during lunch, that can make a big difference. The second strategy is to avoid turning departures or greetings into an overly emotional experience. Third, try to establish a routine so you can calmly leave your home in the morning. Finally, be sure to schedule enough time in the morning so that your dog gets ample exercise before being left alone.
Doggie Daycare is a Popular Solution for Separation Anxiety
Whether you try the tactics discussed above and don’t see a change or want to help your dog feel its best as soon as possible, doggie daycare is an option you should strongly consider. At Dog Day, Every Day, we’re experts at helping pets just like yours feel comfortable, engaged and not lonely.
When a dog stays with us, they will be in a supervised environment with lots of positive stimulation. Thanks to the environment we offer, we’re able to help alleviate feelings of separation anxiety when you’re at work and your kids are at school. And with rates starting at just $15 a day, we make it easy to take full advantage of everything we have to offer. Call us today at 513-860-DOGS to get answers to any specific questions you may have about our doggie daycare.