4th Aug, 2020

Separation anxiety help suffered by dogs offered to owners

Ian Hughes 30th Apr, 2020

DOG owners concerned about their pets suffering separation anxiety when ‘normality resumes’ have been offered advice from Dogs Trust.

The charity – which has a rehoming centre in Kenilworth – says it has received a number of calls from owners concerned about separation anxiety in dogs.

One of those worried about the affect lockdown will have rescued a dog just before the outbreak.

The Warwickshire owner – who did not wish to be named – said: “Before the outbreak we were working on gradually building up the time apart from our rescue dog. Now myself and my fiancé are constantly in the house and we are worried about the long-term impact this will have on her and how she will react when she is left.”

Dogs Trust director of canine behaviour and research Rachel Casey believes pet owners should be taking steps so their dogs do not expect them to be around all of the time.

She said: “For many of us it has been great to spend so much time with our dogs during lockdown and mostly our dogs love us being around too. But all this extra attention could potentially create a ticking time bomb of separation anxiety for our dogs.

“If they expect us to be about all the time, it will be more difficult for them to cope once we go back to our normal lives and aren’t in the house constantly.”

The charity is advising owners to factor in time apart from their dogs each day, separating them by a door or child gate for an hour or two.

Rachel added: “By organising your dog’s day, with time apart, play times, exercise, other activity sessions – like giving them a food filled toy – and quiet times, you can make sure that your dog maintains their ability to cope with the different aspects of ‘normal’ life when we get back to it.”

The charity has a range of ideas online on how to keep dogs occupied at home. It includes tricks to teach your dog and enrichment ideas.

Visit www.dogstrust.org.uk for more information.

The charity – which has a rehoming centre in Kenilworth – says it has received a number of calls from owners concerned about separation anxiety in dogs.

One of those worried about the affect lockdown will have rescued a dog just before the outbreak.

The Warwickshire owner – who did not wish to be named – said: “Before the outbreak we were working on gradually building up the time apart from our rescue dog. Now myself and my fiancé are constantly in the house and we are worried about the long-term impact this will have on her and how she will react when she is left.”

Dogs Trust director of canine behaviour and research Rachel Casey believes pet owners should be taking steps so their dogs do not expect them to be around all of the time.

She said: “For many of us it has been great to spend so much time with our dogs during lockdown and mostly our dogs love us being around too. But all this extra attention could potentially create a ticking time bomb of separation anxiety for our dogs.

“If they expect us to be about all the time, it will be more difficult for them to cope once we go back to our normal lives and aren’t in the house constantly.”

The charity is advising owners to factor in time apart from their dogs each day, separating them by a door or child gate for an hour or two.

Rachel added: “By organising your dog’s day, with time apart, play times, exercise, other activity sessions – like giving them a food filled toy – and quiet times, you can make sure that your dog maintains their ability to cope with the different aspects of ‘normal’ life when we get back to it.”

The charity has a range of ideas online on how to keep dogs occupied at home. It includes tricks to teach your dog and enrichment ideas.

Visit www.dogstrust.org.uk for more information.

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