How to prevent my dog ​​from being bored when I'm at work

How do I prevent my dog ​​from being bored when I'm not around?

Is it hard for you too to leave the house leaving your four-legged companion behind? He watches you leave sadly and you don't want him to get too bored? We still haven't found the perfect solution but we can give you some advice.

  1.     Often absent?

So, are you stuck in the office all day? Do you travel a lot? And you know that you are going to leave your dog alone at home ? Well, maybe it's time to question that adoption desire. Yes, yes, a dog is a responsibility and he doesn't tolerate long absences well.

Now, if you have a flexible schedule and you're sure you're not a chronic truant, but you still worry about it, well, know that some races are better than others at being alone. For example, the Tibetan Spaniel, the Pekingese, the Japanese Spitz, the Welsh Corgi, the Chihuahua or the Yorkshire Terrier can fend for themselves more easily than other doggies.

Adopt a dog? This is an important decision that deserves a lot of thought! A dog becomes a full-fledged member of a family. So, we'll let you think about it. And for those who already have a four-legged companion, we also have some clever advice to share!

  1.     How to recognize a bored dog?

Do you suspect your dog of being unhappy in your absence? There are several signs that can alert you. A bored dog is not necessarily the one with sad eyes, slumped on the sofa. No no, it's more the one who transforms your living room into a battlefield, devours your shoes and scratches your curtains ouch!

Many behavioral problems can develop over time, so it is important to pay particular attention to them so that your companion does not show separation anxiety by barking excessively, doing his business indoors, licks compulsively, or even loses appetite.

There are several warning signs you should watch out for regarding your dog's behavior. Here are the most specific:

  • Your dog seeks your attention in various ways. He follows you around the house, whines or makes whiny sounds for no apparent reason.
  • Your dog is agitated and/or destructive . He exhibits hyperactive behavior, jumping on furniture, attacking your personal belongings, overturning trash cans, or digging holes in the garden if he has the chance.
  • Your dog barks excessively and may engage in destructive behavior, especially when you are not around, which can cause problems with the neighbors.
  • Your dog licks or scratches excessively , which can lead to skin injuries requiring veterinary attention.
  • Your dog is showing a state of apathy . Unlike his usual state, he is inactive, loses his appetite and seems sad.
  1.     Learn to wait for you

Teaching your dog to be independent? It's like trying to teach him to do the dishes: it takes time and a lot of patience! Often stuck to your sneakers, you, like him, have difficulty separating, so do it gradually. Leave it in a room for 5 minutes then 10 minutes and then until the duration of your absences. In this way, he will learn to no longer depend on your presence and will be able to occupy himself without you.

However, if your pooch is the type to panic at the thought of being abandoned, expect a little resistance. Be patient and give him lots of love. It can be a long road, with endless barking and maybe even some damage in your living room (oops). But don't blame him, just teach him that it's not acceptable and make his solo time not a punishment, but rather an opportunity to take it easy.

Another little tip, don’t make a big deal out of your departure or your return. Indeed, when the owner is about to leave, he tries to reassure his dog by talking to him and explaining to him that he will not be gone for long. However, this ritual has the effect of increasing the dog's anxiety, because he quickly associates these signs with the imminent departure of his owner. Thus, the dog's worry increases as he watches his owner put on his shoes, pick up his coat and handle the keys. These ritual habits end up increasing the dog's stress instead of decreasing it, speeding up the separation process instead of slowing it down.

The same goes for the return ritual. The dog shows its joy in finding its master, and the latter reacts in the same way. Feeling guilty for having left him alone, the master responds to his dog's requests, which leads the latter to associate his master's return with a moment of comfort. When the dog has caused damage, we often tend to reprimand it. However, it is important to know that the dog understands his fault better when it is corrected immediately. Scolding him two hours later has no effect, but only increases his anxiety. When returning, it is essential to remain calm, ignore the dog, encourage him to lie down nicely in his basket and clean up the mess (but not in the dog's presence). This can be difficult, but it is essential.

  1.     Offer him company

By this we mainly mean a toy or chew toy and not another dog. In fact, we might think that with another dog, your first dog will be less bored. This is only partly true. In fact, there's no guarantee that they'll get along when it's just the two of them and that doesn't solve the root of the problem. Worse, you will then have two problems. If you can't correct your dog's boredom alone, don't get a second dog... otherwise there will be two of them bored.

If the chew toy is not enough, to make the game a little more difficult, you can also opt for a toy filled with treats? Even more so if access is more difficult. Yes, he will concentrate on eating his treats and will even forget about your absence. 

  1.     Sport: the key to a peaceful day

Do you also, when you've had a good workout, just want to take a nap? Your dog too! So, when you're with him, put on your sneakers, put a harness on him, grab the ball and go for a walk! Not only will it be good for your physical condition, but your pooch will be well spent so that he will take a nap while you are gone. In addition, it will bring you closer together and he will know that even if you are gone for a few hours, when you are there he can count on you.

So yes we are not all early risers and sporty enough to go for an early morning run, but throwing the stick to him two or three times before leaving can already be a very good start or a relaxing walk in the evening so that he can stretch himself and smelling the smells will always be appreciated. 

  1.     Little extras

You can always leave background noise, this will help your dog feel less alone at home, so the radio, TV or a stereo (if it still exists) will do the trick! But be careful on TV, he risks finding himself hypnotized in front of the screen, like a child watching a cartoon. So, it’s best to save that for special occasions. And as a final tip, if you can, ask a relative or neighbor to come by when you are away for a long time. Your dog will have stimulation from a human and will be less aware that you are gone longer than usual. Finally, there are several serious dog sitter sites, it can be an opportunity to meet trustworthy people to look after your dog or walk him when you are not there.

In any case, don't be too hard on yourself if you have to leave your dog at home. The simple fact that you're looking for solutions shows how much you care about their well-being, and that's already huge!

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