Back-To-School Separation Anxiety in PetsPet Care Tips 2 min read
Well, we are officially passed Labor day, which means it’s back to school, back to activities, and back to the general hectic schedules of fall for families. But did you know that back-to-school time is also really hard on your furkids too? The change in schedules, and more time alone at home and away from their busy human families, can result in destructive behaviours and increased stress for your pet.
Sometimes, pet parents ask us if they should use medication to help with the anxiety their pet is going through. Although some fur babies do need medication for separation anxiety, we always encourage our pet parents to try a natural approach first since medications can have their own side effects. In some cases, harsh drugs can make aggression or separation anxiety worse, or a dog may become dependent on medications. We always suggest beginning with a more natural approach.
Natural herbal supplements that are gentle on the body and nervous system are a good alternative for pets suffering from separation anxiety. In addition to acting on the nervous system to reduce excitability, anxiety, aggression, or destructive behaviors, natural formulas like NHV Lesstress for dogs and NHV Matricalm for cats also help boost the immune system. They contain wholesome plant based extracts from highly nutritious and well-researched herbs like Reishi mushroom, Echinacea, and Chamomile that help calm your pet; and being glycerine-based they are safe for long term use.
What else can you do to reduce separation anxiety in your dog or cat? Here are our 8 favorite ways!
- Feed a nutritious and well-balanced diet. Nutrition can compound the problem of anxiety, as a poor diet will make the body go into a state of stress.
- Feed your dog before going out, so that they won’t be hungry, and wonder where you are.
- Walk your dog before going out. A dog that doesn’t get enough exercise has a lot of bottled up energy, which can cause destructive behaviors while you’re away.
- Play some soft music while everyone is out of the house.
- Leave plenty of toys and chew toys around.
- Leave the TV on – some dogs and cats love watching a bit of TV (try a channel that focuses on dogs or other animals for canine kids. For feline kids, try bird videos – there are plenty on YouTube and you can even buy speciality cat DVDs).
- If possible leave a window slightly open to let in some fresh air. Don’t lock your dog or cat in a place where there is no light. Pets love looking out and seeing the world around them.
- Don’t just walk out of the house – leave by saying goodbye (this includes the non-fur kids that your pet may be missing). Pets understand intention.
We know how busy this time of year is, but remember it’s more important than ever to have those special moments with your furkids. Try to carve out some time to take them to their favourite park, or spend some time just throwing a ball around and playing. Not only will this help your furkids with their stress and anxiety, but it will help your own stress and anxiety too!
Published: September 8, 2017