The summer holidays are great for both humans and their faithful canine friends. While your children get time off school, your dog gets time with the family it loves. However, as with all good things, this must come to an end. When the holidays are over and your children go back to school, your dog will be left on its own with little idea as to why.
Usually, the end of the summer holidays means your dog will have to be left by itself for long periods of the day, after many weeks of having people in the house at all times. You can't explain to your pet what is going on, or warn it that this is coming up. To your dog, it will just seem that suddenly your family isn't around much.
This can be very distressing for your pet, and it has the potential to lead to something called 'separation anxiety' - basically, your dog worries that you are gone for good. This can lead to unwanted behaviours, including chewing furniture and urinating in the house.
The best thing you can do for your dog in this scenario is remain calm and collected. Dogs are incredibly good at reading emotions, so if you are upset about leaving your dog they will pick up on this and become distressed as well.
Don't make a big deal about leaving the house in the morning or coming home in the evening. Try ignoring your dog for the first few minutes you are home, before giving them a pet and taking them for a quick walk. By acting like it's no big deal that you're coming and going, it will help your pet understand that this is a normal occurrence.
It is a good idea to take your dog for a walk in the morning, as well. This will help them use up some of their energy, which in turn will reduce their anxiety. Having a routine like this is another thing that will calm your dog down and convince them that the start of term is not the end of the world.
Written by: Hannah