6 Ways to Prepare Your Dog for Back-to-School
Source: Joe Parks via Flickr.com
Summer is coming to a close with its end comes the start of a new school year. Whether you’re a teacher prepping for a fresh batch of students or have kids of your own who will be heading back to the classroom, we humans aren’t the only ones with change on the horizon. Our four-legged friends will have to adjust to new schedules, too.
Your dog is creature of habit, and a modification to her routine when the kids go back to school can be confusing – regardless of how long she’s been a part of your family. That’s why it’s so important to establish clear rules and a set schedule that will ensure she’ll be happy and well adjusted. Here are a few ways you can help your dog cope with your back-to-school activities and everyone’s shift in attention.
Set and follow a daily routine that works with your (and your kids’) schedule all year long. The routine should include feedings, walks, and appropriate play around the same time every day.
Identify a toy your pup really loves and give it to her when your kids are walking out the door. Put it away once your family gets home so it remains the “special toy.”
Send your pup on a scavenger hunt by hiding treats around the house for her to find while you’re away. You can also stuff your dog’s Kong with peanut butter or cream cheese, stick it in the freezer, and give it to her just before you leave.
If your dog is still a puppy, hire a dog walker to come to your house at the same time every weekday. This way she’ll have someone to give her attention and exercise while you’re away.
Plan fun afterschool activities the entire family can do together, like taking your dog to the park or playing a game of fetch. You can also have your kids practice reading aloud to your dog every day before starting other afterschool activities.
Take your pup to dog daycare a couple of days per week to break up the long stretches of time spent alone. Socializing with other humans and dogs will keep her mentally and physically stimulated while everyone else is at school.
Do you have any tips for helping your dog adjust to a back-to-school routine? Share them with us on The Doggy Dojo Facebook page.