“Where did everyone go?” How to prepare pets for life after Stay-At-Home orders are lifted
Right now, we are all spending more time with our pets than ever before. Which is great — right now. But, it’s important to remember that we won’t always be living this way.
Here are some tips from OHS’ Training and Behavior team to help your pets stay routine-based and well-set for when everything returns to normal.
What to do now:
- Try to keep a very similar daily routine now as how it will be when you go back to work and the kids go to school, so your pet’s life isn’t radically changed again. (This may actually help your whole family!)
- If your pet normally spends time contained somewhere during the day, then try to have him go in there at that same time every day now (even if you are home).
- Be aware that taking up running with your dog at this time (health of both of you permitting) is a great stress reliever, but please try to keep this up when you go back to work!
- If you have temporarily changed a room at home into an office, is this room available to your pets now and after. If they won’t be allowed in there when you go back to the office, then don’t let them in there now.
- Keep in mind that there are things we should not be teaching our pets, even though they may seem safe right now. For example, don’t let your pets run out into the street just because there isn’t much traffic right now.
When you go back to work / kids go back to school:
- Get the whole family involved in before and after-school playtime.
- Give your pets fun things to do when you are gone, like puzzle toys and kongs stuffed with treats, new enrichment items for their habitats etc.
- Consider taking your pet back to school, too – enroll your pet in a training class or teach them a new trick each week to open up their vocabulary.
- Consider doggie daycare or a dog walker if your dog likes playing with other dogs, especially if you have been enjoying long walks daily and can see the benefits in your dogs health (both mental and physical) and want to keep that up.
Learn other ways to set your pet up for success with virtual one-on-one training, puppy romps, webinars and classes from the OHS Behavior and Training team.