Our busy lifestyles and long working hours can mean that our beloved dogs are left home alone for hours on end. These long periods of time being left alone can lead to separation anxiety and behavioural problems.
Whilst some dogs are happy to be left alone, others can struggle with the hours of solitude. These dogs will tend to develop bad habits such as barking, howling and going to the toilet indoors or can even be destructive within the home. You may be completely unaware that your dog is behaving this way whilst you’re out, so don’t be afraid to ask your neighbours if they hear anything during the day. They will probably be impressed that you are taking the initiative to make a difference.
There are quite a few things you can do to reduce your dog’s anxiety and related bad habits, here are a few suggestions from our team:
- Give your dog plenty of exercise first thing in the morning to burn their excess energy which can cause naughty behaviour, they’ll be so tired they will mostly sleep whilst you’re out and then you can take them out after your return. You should try and get them off the lead to run around freely and to trot around to sniff their environment, this will give them mental stimulation.
- Keep them entertained with a food-dispensing toy. Toys that hide treats and take work to find can keep them occupied for hours.
Book them into a dog day care facility. Dog day cares are the best for keeping your dog well rounded. They will burn off heaps of energy during playtime and will be mentally active during socialisation. So by the time you come to pick them up they would have had a fun busy day that will lead to a very peaceful night’s sleep.
- Don’t leave your dog out in the back garden – Although this may solve toileting problems, it won’t solve their excess energy issues. Just because they’re outside, it doesn’t mean they’ll be running around all day. More than likely he will be hanging around by the back door waiting for someone to let him in or even bark constantly to get you attention. Please be aware that they could also be vulnerable to intruders when left outside.
- Get them walked during the day. You can always hire a professional dog walker to come and collect your dog and walk them for you.