Dog Training Elite Blog
Posted on Sep 14th 2021
The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in a surge in dog ownership. First-time dog lovers everywhere have opened their homes and their hearts to a four-legged friend. After a year and a half of uncertainty, it feels like things are finally starting to get back to normal. Kids are heading back to school, and more adults are returning to the office. But for those fluffy friends back at home, “normal” is having their beloved new pack of humans around all the time. Legions of pandemic puppies have gotten used to having their families around and are facing more alone time. As people start to leave their dogs alone more often, dog guardians are noticing signs of separation anxiety. The last thing dog lovers want to see is a trail of destruction when they return home, but with a bit of patience, some training, and a lot of love, you can keep their fur kids’ anxiety at bay.
Dog Training Elite has had an absolute banner year helping dog lovers navigate the unfamiliar waters of pet ownership. With help from our expert Franchise Owners, we've come up with seven tips to keep anxiety separation at bay and make that transition just a little bit less “ruff!”
Give Them A Morning Adventure
A vigorous early morning walk to kick the day off can help your fluffy companion burn off some of their energy. Follow this up with breakfast or snacks, and you can create a reward system for your dog. A tired dog will want to have a nice nap after a bit of adventuring, and if they've settled down, they won't even notice you leave. You might be leaving the house, but at least they know they'll get a bit of adventure and treats out of it! Don't forget to mix up the routine by trying different routes and destinations to keep your dog engaged on your adventures together. After all, if you’re leaving them home alone, a bit of fun before you go is the leash you can do.
Keep It Low-Key
By not making a big deal out of leaving the house, you can help condition your dog into thinking that leaving them alone isn’t such a big deal. When you come home, be happy to see your friend, (they’ll sure be happy to see you!) but don’t go over the top. Too much yelling and excitement can make your dog think that your daily there-and-back routine is a major event, one worth worrying over.
Keep Their Minds Sharp
A bored dog is more likely to get anxious and do unwanted behavior such as chewing on the furniture. When you're at home you can stop them, but how do you do that when they're home alone? We've found that a toy stuffed with treats that are hard to get out can keep your dog entertained for hours. Just be sure to take any leftovers back when you come home, that way they associate you leaving with something special.
Establish Stay-ing Power
Teaching your dog the stay game is another way to keep separation anxiety at bay. Start with short lengths of time, and once your puppy can stay for several minutes, you can try getting them to stay while you leave the room. As they become more comfortable with you leaving their sight, you can try having them stay while you step outside your front door. Eventually, they'll come to associate the front door with the stay game and see the family going out as simply part of the game.
Try A Test Run First
Once you and your dog have mastered the stay game, you can try making shorter trips out of the house without your canine companion, 5 to 10 minutes at a time. Over time, increase the duration of your separations. They'll learn that you come and go and that you don't love them any less for it.
Teach Them To Ignore Cues
We've all heard how dogs can sniff out when something is going on. When their mom or dad picks up a leash, they know there's an adventure to be had. But they can also learn that picking up car keys, grabbing your favorite jacket, or even putting on makeup can be a sign that you're about to leave them. Try picking up your keys, then sitting down and watching a movie. Putting on makeup, and then making lunch. Eventually, your hound will have found that they can’t predict what you’re going to do at all.
Consider Formal Training
Our Franchise Owners are here to help first-time and veteran dog owners alike uncover their best possible relationship with their four-legged friends. Dog Training Elite uses a proven, balanced-positive method to train dogs AND dog owners right in the comfort of their own homes. Using proven training techniques developed by our Founder John Mestas, our teams of expert Franchise Owners can help teach dogs new skills, keep their minds sharp, and share new ideas and games with dog owners. Not only is this great fun for dog owners and their best furry friends, but it also helps dogs manage their separation anxiety. A little time spent with one of our Franchise Owners can yield PAW-sitive results for everyone involved!
About Dog-Training Elite:
For over 40 years, our Founder John Mestas has been working with dogs and perfecting our proven training techniques for standard obedience testing, behavior correction, and helping relationships between dogs and their owners!
With multiple revenue streams, outstanding economics, and an industry-leading home-based business concept that is convenient to both trainers and dog owners, Dog Training Elite is the ideal dog training franchise opportunity for dog lovers and savvy investors alike.
If you are a dog lover looking for a change of pace that means getting to stay home with your fluffy co-worker, visit us today and find out how a Dog Training Elite franchise is not only a dog owner's best friend; it can also be a dog lovers' dream business!