Tips for your family dog(s) during Covid19 from Nj Fix My Dog.
This is a very stressful time for your family and your dog – Although dogs are a great way to feel better during times like these, too much attention or playtime can be overstimulating and, in some cases, be a bit stressful. Signs of stress are yawning, wide eyes, a lot of blinking, lip licking, or the desire to be away from people (going under tables, etc.)Many dogs are not quite used to the new amount of play or exercise they may now be getting with so many family members currently at home, this can lead to sore feet and overall body soreness. When a dog is feeling sore you may see them offer characteristic behaviors like move away from physical attention, show teeth, growl or even snap, which is not their norm at all. Please explain to your children that your dog “may” be a little sore and not to hug them or lay on them.
We are all hope to be going back to work and school at some point so let’s be sure your dog maintains the skills to be left home for longer periods of time. It will be very hard for them to have a family home for a long period and then suddenly have everyone leave to go back to a normal schedule, this would include:
- Keeping the same feeding, walking, and potty schedule
- Maintaining their ability to be alone (this might mean leaving them home on occasion when the family goes for a walk or any other outing).
- If your dog was normally crated when you are not home, please practice controlled separation a few times each day. That would mean creating them even though the family is at home.
How to keep your dog happy and exercise in a limited space. We all know a tired dog is a happy owner! There are many things that can be done in-home to tire your best friend out. There are many videos on YouTube about teaching your dog trick, this can also be a great activity for your children to do with them. Please consider your dog’s physical ability when teaching these tricks.
Some wonderful trick to look up are:
- Hand touch, Spin left and right, back up (beep beep game)
- Doggy push-ups (sit to down, down to sit, stand to down, down to stand, etc.)
- Hiding a cookie and having them find it (you can get 6-8 small boxes and spread them out in a large room and put the cooking in only one)
- Sit up on their hind legs and so much more.
Too much attention or play can create hyperactivity in some dogs, think about trying to get your children to fall asleep after playing games right before bed. Always keep a wise balance on how much play they are getting and add in some calm times each day too.
If you need personalized advice, Jean and her team at NJ Fix My Dog are here if you need any advice during these difficult times. https://njdogandpuppytraining.com/