Prep your dog for back to school
Updated: Jun 25
Parents put in a lot of footwork to make sure their kids are ready for back to school, but have you thought about how back to school time will affect your dog? We owe it to our dogs' to help ease that transition from "constant entertainment" to "home alone all day." It can hit some dogs awfully hard to lose their playmate, so here are some things you can do to help your dog.
Practice Alone Time Start by leaving your dog home for increasingly longer periods of time- a little more each week until you've reached the perfect duration for your circumstances. If you can, vary the amount of time your dog is left alone so it not always for a long duration.
Entertainment Center Giving your dog something to do while you are gone is helpful. Frozen stuffed Kongs are a fun way to prevent separation anxiety. By giving them something to do as you leave, they are otherwise engaged and don't pay much attention to you leaving. In addition, you are pairing something good with your leaving.
Background Noise Some dogs are more comfortable if there's background noise. Leave a radio or tv on. Another option is to turn on Through A Dog's Ear (TADE). The music is composed specifically to benefit the canine ear (and mind). Start playing the music now, before the kids go back to school, so it's not an indicator to the dog that you're about to leave.
Schedule Relief Midday relief, at least for the first month or two, might help your dog get adjusted to all the time alone fairly quickly. You can ask a retired neighbor to come over around noon to visit with your dog and let him out (or take him for a short walk). Hire a local dog walker or even consider a doggie day camp a few times a week.