Almost any type of stress can affect us in some very different and dangerous ways, everything from rising blood pressure to insomnia, depression and other health issues. Even our pets may be experiencing different levels of stress and strain. While we’re busy dealing with our own type of anxiety at work, school or simply running errands, we may imagine our canine friends are simply quietly living the “dog’s life” of comfort and companionship. But instead, they could be the victims of separation anxiety at home.
For example, research has shown that many types of smaller dog breeds can have a “one-owner” type of mentality and when left “home alone,” they can be riddled with separation anxiety without their one, true master. Although this is just one example, still our beloved canine companions can be dealing with other types of stress sometimes without our knowledge.
If you feel your dog may have anxiety for any reason, try these 4 tips to help them stay calm when they are home alone for any length of time.
Reassurance and Returning
If we’re starting with separation anxiety as a stress factor, a very real and difficult situation with some animals, it begins with some reassurance, followed by repetition, and the regular recurrence when we’re returning home to our loved one. Making the same statement whenever we’re departing, no matter how silly it may seem, repeated often enough, it will make them realize you’ll always be coming back to them.
No matter what, like “I’ll be right back,” while using a soothing tone, petting them and reassuring them, it will give them comfort. After all, dogs don’t have watches and five minutes or five hours can be misinterpreted by them. Even language barriers cross these canine barriers like “ I’m going to work”, repeated over and over again, will give them a sense of security.
And While You’re Away
Often there is a certain amount of chaos, noise and confusion that happens when the whole family is together. Once the house empties out of the human occupants, some dogs can feel all alone in a quiet and uneventful home. Leaving the television set on, a stereo playing music, even a white noise machine playing somewhere in the background can offer them some comfort so they don’t feel like they’re left all by themselves.
Also, be sure to leave plenty of interactive toys, things to chew on, play with, perhaps some hidden treats to heighten their interest during your absence, especially for younger canines. Even though the average dog sleeps 12-14 hours per day in the prime of their life, this fluctuates with older dogs and younger pups for obvious reasons.
If you’re still having trouble acclimating your pet to being without you or they’re showing other signs of stress and strain, there are various natural remedies available. Search for natural products that are specifically designed to calm all different kinds of critters who may be stressed during times emergencies or unplanned, but necessary relocation, like natural disasters.
These products are typically made from a number of different herbs that don’t “drug” an animal into submission, but rather it simply soothes them with an all natural formula. It can also be used to calm animals that need to rest after surgery, pets who experience stress from fireworks, sirens, thunderstorms and other annoyances that can cause them extreme havoc from this type of stress.
Relax and Unwind
Always remember to pay particular attention to your pet whenever you return home, every, single, solitary time. Even if you’ve had an especially hard day yourself, always greet them with the same type of enthusiasm they offer to you when you arrive. And remind them you’re just as happy to see them, as they are when they greet you, even if your daily routine was awful. You don’t have to wag your tail, pant excessively, but you can still offer them a happy greeting.
And finally, climb on the couch with your pooch, if that’s your regular routine, a way to unwind or relax. Perhaps it’s time to take them outside for their daily romp. Keep everything consistent, after all, dogs (and humans) operate much better when they rely on a daily schedule.