A LEADING vets have issued advice to worried dog owners to help reduce their pets’ anxiety as more workers make a return to the office.
Following 18 months of largely being home-based due to the coronavirus pandemic, the government is now encouraging people to return to office working after restrictions across England were lifted.
However, for many pet owners the transition from being around their furry friends for much of the day to being absent for large chunks of time is a worrying one and experts at 608 Vets in Solihull, Bentley Heath and Acocks Green, have provided a number of helpful tips to ensure a worry-free time for both pets and owners.
Roshni Hothi, lead clinical director at 608 Vets, said: “Dogs are ruled by routine, so their new normal over the past 18 months or so is having their owners around them almost 24/7.”
“Providing time alone is one of the keys to preventing separation anxiety in dogs, whether they are young, old or rescued.
“If you don’t, you may find that when normal routines return, our beloved canines won’t be psychologically prepared.
“Setting pets up for success is crucial.
“For example, if a dog were to show signs of distress when you grab your bag or keys, try doing this in front of them while making a cup of coffee or having your breakfast to communicate these actions as normal and routine.
“It’s also important to encourage independence. For example, begin leaving the room to build up your dog’s confidence of being alone. Start with a level they can cope with and gradually build minutes or even hours.
“Replicating pets’ ‘normal’ is also a really useful tool, so leave the radio on at a sensible volume for some background noise and to simulate the noise of daily life in the weeks and days leading up to a return to the office.
“Finally, try giving them something to do while on their own, such as puzzle feeders, slow feeders and appropriate chew toys. These can act as a pacifier and build on the positive association that ‘good things happen when left alone’.
To find out more about the campaign, and for details on 608 Vets, visit www.608vets.com or search for 608 Vets on social media.