Pets are known to be man’s best friends and they bring happiness and joy to countless households. However, some animals may struggle with separation anxiety and this can result in anxious behavior, such as barking, destructive behavior, and relieving themselves indoors.
Separation anxiety is a common problem for pets, especially dogs and cats. It can cause a lot of distress in both pets and their owners. Fortunately, there are various steps that you can take to deal with a pet that suffers from separation anxiety:
1. Create a Consistent Routine
Pets thrive on routine, so try to maintain a consistent schedule of feeding, walking, and playing to provide stability and predictability. Consistency may help to reduce your pet’s anxiety when you have to leave for extended periods.
2. Give Them Plenty of Exercise
Ensuring that your pet gets plenty of exercise on a daily basis can help reduce anxiety levels. Exercise helps to release pent-up energy and also gets your pet’s endorphins flowing, giving them a positive boost.
3. Speak with a Veterinarian
If your pet’s anxiety is severe or prolonged, talk to a veterinarian who can provide guidance and support. In some cases, medication may also be used to treat separation anxiety.
4. Ease Your Departure and Arrival
When departing, keep your goodbyes short and sweet without any fuss, and similarly, keep your arrival subtle and muted. This will help to reduce your pet’s anxiety, as your leaving and arrival won’t be associated with a sudden and dramatic change in their environment.
5. Make the Departure and Return Time Special
Give your pet some time to adjust when you return home, and spend some quality time with them when you can. Giving your pet a special treat or toy can also help to make them look forward to your return.
6. Create a Safe and Comfortable Environment
Provide your pet with a safe and familiar environment while you are away. Consider keeping your home fully secured to prevent your pet from escaping, and provide comfortable bedding and a familiar toy or blanket to help them feel safe and secure.
7. Try Desensitization Training
You can also try desensitization training, which involves gradually exposing your pet to being alone for longer periods. Start with short periods and gradually increase the time, so your pet gradually gets used to the separation.
In conclusion, dealing with a pet with separation anxiety can be challenging, but it is important to be patient and consistent in your approach. By easing your departures and arrivals, creating a routine, providing plenty of exercise, and making the environment safe and comfortable, you can help to reduce your pet’s anxiety levels and keep them happy and relaxed. Always remember to seek help from a vet if your pet’s anxiety is severe or prolonged.