Too often, we see footage of dogs who have tried to occupy themselves when they are left home alone. Whether they are outdoor or indoor pets, this usually leads to destroyed furniture, excessive digging and damage to property. The hard truth is that if your dog is a working breed, such as a Border Collie, Husky or German Shepherd, this damage is likely to be even more detrimental.
While training your pets is one way to stop them from acting out while you are away, this is not always the right solution. In fact, even the best-behaved dogs may act out if they are feeling mentally unstimulated. This doesn’t mean you need to resort to locking them up while you are at work or away from home. Some of the many strategies we love implementing include:
Practising obedience every morning
Teaching your dog new commands or practising new ones is a great way to activate their mind. It can tire them out and make them more contempt to spend a few hours alone, resting in the sunshine. This obedience training doesn’t need to be remarkably long either. Even spending 5-10 minutes with them before you leave the house is great. It can also help jog their memory, so they remember house rules while you are away, such as staying off the furniture.
At Petnest, we recommend training them with a range of healthy dog treats. This will boost how they feel inside and out. But, it will also remind them that rewards come from good behaviour.
Rotate their toys each day
If you had to watch the same TV show each day, you would likely quickly become bored of it very quickly. Just like humans, dogs can get bored. So, providing them with the same toys to play with daily may mean they slowly begin gravitating to other forms of entertainment, such as scratching furniture or digging holes.
Having a selection of toys on hand, like Kong puzzle toys, can help keep them entertained for hours on end.
Hide treats around the house or backyard
Dogs love using their noses to find treats and food. Hiding some treats around the house just before you leave for work can help them put their nose to the test. This will also ensure they exercise throughout the day as they wander in search of their favourite foods. Just be sure to place these treats in easy-to-access spaces, as you don’t want your pet getting injured throughout the day.
PetFriendly showcases a bunch of food games you can set up for your pet to keep them entertained, even while you aren’t home.
The PetNest team is always happy to help
At PetNest, we know how stressful it can be if your pet begins to act out. We are always happy to provide tips and products to help your pet redivert its focus.