Saying goodbye to pool days and ice cream trucks on hot summer days can be hard! Summer days that are filled with lazy days at home with your pets and family is almost over. Now, autumn is right around the corner! Which means it's back-to-school time! As your family returns to a busy schedule with work, school, sports, etc. your pet at home may not understand the new schedule and may need some help adjusting to being home alone during the day. In this article, we'll give you some tips and recommendations to help your pet adapt to the new change.

PREPARING YOUR PET

Most of the time cats adjust to being home alone much easier than dogs do. To help your dog get used to a new schedule, we recommend easing your pet into the new routine weeks before the change begins. Start waking up at the new time and feeding your pets at the same time every single day to help begin the day. Act out the busy preparations in the morning that your new routine will have. For example, making lunches, showering, and getting ready, and leaving the house. Researchers also recommend leaving on background noise while you're away to help your pets. Doing so will allow your to be able to see how your pets react to the new change and you'll have time to fix any issues that could arise.

If problems do arise, here are some tips you can add into your new routine to help your pet adjust:

1) Be sure to pencil in some time in your new routine to exercise your pet. It could be an extra 30 minutes in the morning, an evening walk, or extra playtime in the backyard. Exercise releases energy that your pet has and if left unaddressed, it could lead to destructive behavior. Unexplained bad behavior could be signs of boredom in your pet. To beat the boredom, look for toys or treats that are occupying or can extend exercise and playtime.

a chocolate lab resting outside with a Chuckit! Flying Squirrel Dog Toy

To upgrade your dog's exercise and playtime, we recommend:

To upgrade your cat's exercise and playtime, we recommend:

To help alleviate boredom for dogs, we recommend:

To help alleviate boredom for cats, we recommend:

A black kitten playing with a Jackson Galaxy Butterfly Ball Cat Toy

2) Explore the idea of hiring a pet caretaker or signing up for daycare for your pets. On average, a dog can be left alone cooped up at home for 8+ hours a day. Most dogs are extroverts and love playing and making friends with other dogs and humans. You would have peace of mind that your pets are being taken care of and having lots of fun while you are busy at work or school. Another option to consider is hiring a dog walker. There are a lot of dog walking companies that make their employees go through extensive background checks so that you can rest assured that your dog is with someone safe. Most of the time, a dog walker will stop by your house during the day and walk your dog for you. Doing this would give your dog something to look forward to and would also give your dog a way to release their energy during the day.

3) Emotional control is important during the new routine as pets can mirror emotions. In the morning when you're leaving, researchers recommend you stay calm and say a quick goodbye to your pets. If you show them extra love it may condition them to associate extra love and attention with you and your family leaving. Your pets can pick up on cues and if the little ones start to become fussy when they leave for school, then your pet may pick up on that behavior and become anxious as well. It's important to stay calm and explain to the kids why it is important to stay calm when leaving home. It's always important to remember to continue building the relationship between your family and your pets during the new changes. At the end of the day, remember to reward your pet for their good behavior with catnip or cat treats for cats and WonderSnaXX Peanut Butter and Apple Braids for dogs while the kids have their afternoon snacks.

a happy dog with a WonderSnaXX Dog Treat

CONCLUSION

Do you hear the school bell ringing? Can you smell the pumpkin spice lattes? Can you see the leaves changing their colors? Kickoffs and tournaments are right around the corner! We are at that time of year again . . . back to school time! As you and your family begin new routines, remember your pet. If you prepare them ahead of time, stock them up with items to keep them occupied, give them plenty of exercise, and reward their good behavior, getting into the new routine should be smooth and effortless.

Sources:

  1. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/4-tips-preparing-your-dog-back-to-school-season/
  2. https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/training/preparing-dog-back-to-school/
  3. http://www.leadervet.com/media/back-to-school-5-tips-for-helping-pets-cope
  4. https://blog.homesalive.ca/dog-blog/benefits-of-dog-daycare
  5. https://k9uchicago.com/blog/doggy-daycare-benefits/

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