As summer draws to a close and the school year begins again, you may notice your dog feeling overwhelmed and acting differently as a result. This busy time of year is a great time to think about your dog, who may feel left out during this time of transition.
The American Kennel Club recommends the following tips to keep your dog happy and calm during the changing seasons.
Make the changes gradually. It is important to help your dog adopt new routines little by little. If there’s a family member who regularly walks the dog or sleeps in the same room as their pet and will spend less time at home, be sure to delegate these tasks to someone who will be around more constantly. Make these changes ahead of time, before your routine officially changes, so your pup can acclimate.
Anticipate changes in the relationship. Keep an eye out for the close relationships your dog has formed during the summer months. Whether these relationships are with a family member who is planning to move or was just visiting for the summer, try to foster new bonds between your dog and other people who will be staying.
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Don’t forget to exercise. Make sure you don’t sacrifice your dog’s activities due to change of routine or change of seasons. Exercise can help solve a variety of canine behavior problems, so always remember to provide your pet with opportunities for physical exercise, rain or shine, hot or cold.
Mind stimulation. Boredom can be at the root of various undesirable dog behaviors such as digging, chewing, barking, and jumping. Stimulating your dog’s brain is just as important as physical exercise. Indoor fetch games and practicing basic obedience commands can help keep your dog’s mind from wandering.
Learn new tricks. Dog training may occur less during the summer months. With routines changing, teaching your pup a new trick or two is a good way to help your dog feel included in the back-to-school routine. Teaching your dog new tricks is easier than you think; all it takes is patience and a few treats. Helps keep training sessions concise. Simple tricks like shaking hands or interlocking legs are a fun way to make sure your dog feels included in your household routine.
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