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Acclimating Your Pets to the New Normal (Again)

Small Dog Looking Wistfully Out a Window at HomeMany Bannock County 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 tough on your pets. After so much time together, being separated can cause your pets to experience high anxiety levels, leading to several destructive or otherwise unwanted behaviors. To help acclimate your pet to your new work routine and keep these behaviors under control, here are a couple of tips you can implement immediately and throughout the next few months.

Day Care

Perhaps you’re scared about leaving your pet home alone. Or they’re showing signs of stress or boredom (peeing on the floor, excessive barking, spraying furniture, or chewing items). Think about having 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 lot of work toward easing the transition.

Crate Training

For dogs, you may need to implement crate training if you haven’t previously done so. Even though it isn’t right for all dogs, others like the security of being inside a crate while you are gone. You may provide the crate with a plush bed and chew toys to make their stay inside more pleasant. Just be prepared that crate training may take some time, so begin as soon as possible and anticipate some complaining first.

Enrichment Toys

Boredom is a major reason why pets are destructive. To save your furniture and your sanity, you may 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 begin to associate the fun playtime with your absence and help them feel less anxious. For dogs, chew toys, puzzle toys, balls, and obstacle courses can all be excellent ways to keep them occupied. For cats and other pets, establishing areas for them to climb, “hunt” for treats or objects, or motion-activated toys they can chase are excellent choices.

Doggy Camera

If you’d want to go high-tech with your pet care, you may try obtaining a “doggy” camera for your house. There are numerous different types of cameras, but they all enable you to keep an eye on your pet while you are at work. Other cameras will even dispense treats and/or let you talk to your pet through a speaker. (Most need a decent WiFi signal and a smartphone app to use.)

Together Time

Lastly, if you foresee a routine change, one of the best things you can do is continue prioritizing your time with your pet. For instance, try to arrange your daily routine so that you and your pet can enjoy a walk or some playtime before you go to work, and then again as soon as you return home. This is particularly crucial for dogs, who need to walk with you regularly to feel calm and happy. By creating 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 arrive each evening.

Returning to working outside the home can be a significant adjustment for both you and your pet. However, by implementing these tips, you can make that transition a bit easier. Other options 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 Pocatello has your answer. Our Bannock County property managers would be pleased to help you, and your pet locate a new home to live in. Contact us online today!

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.