Your pets have been content to have the children home all summer (and, perhaps even the school year, too). Now that schools have reopened, your pets may have some feelings about the kids being away.
If your children leave the house for a full day back in school, your pets could suffer the loss. Most dogs are attached to their humans and may feel their job is to protect human family members. When you’re away, they may be anxious and feel abandoned. Even cats can feel unsettled when you’re gone. How can you help pets adjust to more time alone?
Be sure to leave them plenty of fresh water.
If you don’t have to crate an animal, don’t. It may be easier on your pets if they can move around freely.
Treat your pets before you leave to make your exit a positive experience.
When you get home, make your pets a priority. Take them for a walk, play with them, and give them a good cuddle.
If your dogs are really struggling at home, you might want to enroll them in daycare so they can enjoy some socialization during the day.
Anxious house pets can become depressed and even destructive. Teach them to know that you’re coming back by leaving them at home when you run errands.
Do you let your dogs walk the kids to the bus stop? As sweet as that may seem, you may be setting your dog up for a catastrophic accident. Some drivers are impatient when the bus STOP sign is extended. The second it’s retracted, they are focused only on moving on. Your dog could be in that driver’s path. Other problems with dogs and the school bus could be:
They might chase the school bus
They might snap at children who get between them and their own kids
They may grab your child’s backpack to try to keep them from getting on the bus
When your children come home from school, what is the first thing they do? They most likely toss their book bags and backpacks on the floor and race to the kitchen for snacks. Dogs and cats might find these bags and packs intriguing. Leftover lunches, treats, pencils, and markers, smell good and taste good, too! There could be something dangerous in there, awaiting your pet. Be sure to remember:
Some foods are toxic to animals, like grapes, raisins, and some nuts.
Your child may have an inhaler or other medication in the backpack that could make your pets sick.
There are plenty of things to chew on, from pencils and pens to markers and rulers. Any one of those could be toxic and some could cause choking.
Don’t forget that your pets are attached to their human family members. They miss you when you’re gone. They’re thrilled to see you when you return. Greet them with affection and make time to play. And help them adjust to long absences before they happen so they won’t worry quite as much when you’re away!
If you have any questions about how to help your pets adjust to kids going back to school, please call us at (951)-684-2181. We welcome your questions about taking care of your pet. If your pet needs a wellness checkup, please schedule an appointment soon!