This is a sponsored post on behalf of Purina.
Summer is winding down, and back to school is officially on! In our house, the crazy hustle and bustle of school supply shopping and new-clothes-for-new-schools is officially on its way! We’re all flying around, buzzing like busy bees excited over the fresh year in our new house, and the dogs? Well, the dogs are TOTALLY confused. Why can’t they come shopping with us? What are all these bags doing everywhere? WHAT DO YOU MEAN I CAN’T EAT THE SNEAKER BOX?
It’s important to let your pets know that they are just as important to you now as they were before you began your full-on school shopping extravaganza, let alone leaving them to go back to school. Separation anxiety isn’t just a thing for people, it’s a thing for pets, too.
Encourage your children to spend time with their pets before they leave for school as well as when they return can help reassure their pets that they are still loved and not being left behind. Studies have shown that nearly 20% of the nation’s 80 million dogs have some form of separation anxiety (for senior dogs, that number jumps to between 29- to 50-percent). During this time of year, pets go from months of playtime and bountiful interaction with the family, to a completely different schedule, which can consist of little to no interaction during the day. Purina is committed to the health and well being of pets, and they’ve provided some useful tips to make this transition easier for all our furry family members.
Schedule Play Time
Set up designated play and engagement time with your pet each day. “This is where appropriate treating can come into play. We want to make sure that we reward the good behaviors that we’re seeing and discourage the bad behaviors. And that’s where a nice treat here or there, along with verbal, praise can go a long way,” says Venator.
Turn Up The Music
To keep your pet engaged throughout the day, leave some music on when you leave the house.
Exercise can help reduce the anxiety of a new routine. Take your dog for a walk or play an interactive game with your cat to get your pet moving.
I encourage my children to have the dogs around in most every aspect of our daily life (except cooking, they sure can clog up the kitchen when I’ve got hot stuff on the stove). The kids bring the dogs outside with them, they have them lay with them while watching TV, or in the rooms nearby while they’re on their computers/tablets or video gaming devices.
Pets need all the love and encouragement they can get with back to school to not feel lonely. (Heck, so do moms! The deafening quiet can get tough to take!)
Whether you’re already back to school or preparing to be, now is a great time to also begin planning a new routine for your pets, to lessen the chance they’ll feel lonely or experience separation anxiety when home alone. A little extra lovin’ goes a loooong way for our pet family members, don’t ya think? (And moms. Please don’t forget the moms.) You can find more helpful tips for your furry family members at Purina.com!