During COVID, our pets had it made. They got to see us all of the time and probably got spoiled. Now reality sets in as we head back to work. While we have some adapting to do, the bigger change will be for our furry friends.
While pets we had pre-COVID should deal with you being away easier, the ones we got during quarantine may be confused, according to experts. Some, if you're lucky, will look at you being gone as cherished quiet time.
Either way, you should prep your pooch for the return to normalcy. Here’s how:
- Practice their independence in small steps then make the duration longer. Put them in a separate room to get acclimated to being alone
- Set your pet up with a familiar, safe space that’s cozy
- Desensitize them to departure cues like keys jingling
- Don’t fuss over goodbyes and hellos. It may be tempting.. but don’t
- Carve out pre-work quality time with your pet. A walk is great for a dog
- Continue to be consistent with leaving them treats and toys even after the transition phase
- If you’re gone for extended periods, have a friend or dogwalker check in on them
- Leave soothing background noise on
- If the dog misbehaves while you’re gone, do not punish them. They are based on stress