Many Portsmouth residents have spent at least part of the past year working from home. Some have been working from home for even longer but are now heading back to the office. That transition can be especially painful for your pets. After a long time together, being separated can cause your pets to suffer high anxiety levels, making them become destructive or otherwise unwanted behaviors. To help acclimate your pet to your new work routine and keep these behaviors under control, here are several tips you can implement immediately and throughout the next few months.
Perhaps you’re frightened about leaving your pet home alone. Or they’re demonstrating signs of stress or boredom (peeing on the floor, excessive barking, spraying furniture, or chewing items). It would be great to have someone stay with your pet for at least part of the day or take them to a playgroup. If you introduce your pet’s new caregiver before you have to go back to the office, that can go a long way toward easing the transition.
If you haven’t previously done it, you need to implement crate training for your dogs. While it isn’t right for all dogs, others like the security of being inside a crate while you are gone. You might add a plush bed and chew toys in the crate to make their time there more relaxed. Just keep in mind that crate training may take some time; that’s why you need to start early and prepare for some complaining first.
Boredom is the main reason why pets get destructive. To save your furniture and your sanity, you could consider leaving your pet with some enrichment toys while you are at work. If you give the toys to your pet only while you are gone, they may quickly associate the fun playtime with your absence and help them feel less anxious. For dogs, chew toys, puzzle toys, balls, and obstacle courses are all useful options to keep them engaged. For cats and other pets, building spaces for them to climb, “hunt” for treats or objects, or motion-activated toys they can chase are ideal options.
If you’d choose to go high-tech with your pet care, you might consider buying a “doggy” camera for your house. There are a couple of different types of cameras, but they all help you to keep an eye on your pet while you are at work. Some cameras will even dispense treats and/or let you talk to your pet through a speaker. (Most demand a strong WiFi signal and a smartphone app to use.)
Ultimately, if you assume a routine change, one of the best things you can do is continue prioritizing your time with your pet. To give an instance, try to arrange your daily routine so that you and your pet can enjoy a walk or some playtime before you depart, and then again as soon as you get home. This is extra important for dogs, who need to walk with you regularly to feel calm and happy. By organizing a new routine around your work routine that includes your pet, you can help ease their anxiety and encourage them to wait patiently until you come home each evening.
Returning to working outside the home can be a big adjustment for both you and your pet. But by using these tips, you can make that transition a bit easier. Other ways to ease your transition back to work might include things like living closer to your job or moving to a more pet-friendly rental home or neighborhood. If your lifestyle could use an upgrade and a new place to live, Real Property Management Hampton Roads has your solution. Our Portsmouth property managers would be happy to help you, and your pet seeks a new place to live. Contact us online today!
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