Training & Behavior

Preparing Your Dog for Your Return to Work

Dog home alone looking out window

As Covid-19 restrictions begin to ease, many people will find themselves returning to their office. Dogs are creatures of habit, and when you change that routine, it can cause anxiety. To prepare for the return to an in-person workplace, we’ve got some tips to help your dog with separation anxiety.

Signs of Dog Separation Anxiety

When your dog starts to experience separation anxiety, you may begin to observe the following behaviors:

  • Sudden and abnormal urination and defecation inside the house by a dog who's already housetrained
  • Increase in barking, howling or other vocalizations
  • Excessive chewing and other destructive behaviors inside the home
  • Unusual panting, pacing, or other signs of physical agitation

Not to worry, avoiding these behaviors before they start is possible, but it relies on you getting your dog prepared for the big change.

How to Prepare Your Dog for Your Return to Work

Even before you know your return-to-office date, you can start preparing your dog by establishing a routine like the one he will soon be on. In fact, if you know you’ll be back in the office at all, it’s best to start as soon as possible.

Getting up and going to bed at the same time every day will help your dog get into a consistent routine. Also, take him for walks in the morning and evening at times that are the same as when you anticipate you’ll be walking them when you return to work. Showering, eating and getting dressed at the same time every day will also help your dog get into the flow of things.

One more way to get your dog used to you being away is to plan short time periods away from home, so your dog will get used to having the place all by himself. You can start to do this by creating separation at home, by giving them crate time or closing doors and letting them have some alone time in a quiet part of the home. Once your dog has adapted to alone time while you’re still home, start to leave the house in short bursts torun errands or go on a walk; these steps will lessen your dog’s anxiety once your schedule returns to normal.

Before Leaving the Home

When you finally return to the office, it’s important to do everything you can to make sure they’re calm and happy.

  • Departures should be done calmly and without too much attention being paid to your dog.
  • It’s a good idea for their general calmness to spend some extra time during the day playing or bonding, which can impact their overall level of calmness.
  • A tired dog is a happy dog. Longer walks or a strenuous play session can help.
  • If you must leave abruptly, try giving your dog a treat as you go to add a positive connotation to your departure.

Follow these steps and your dog will be sure to make a healthy transition as you return to the office.

Along with preparing your dog for a new schedule change, you can prepare your dog for a healthy life with a personalized Just Right dog food blend crafted for their nutritional needs.