Danny lives with his dog, Sander, a golden retriever. Sander loves to socialise and would often go on walks around the block with Danny. Sander loves to run in the park, play with kids in the public playground, and be a merry and happy dog. When the government imposed restrictions because of the coronavirus outbreak, Danny decided to heed the warning and stay at home. Even now when the restrictions have eased, Danny still doesn’t want to venture out of the house unless necessary.
That left Sander feeling imprisoned in his own home. Sure, he can walk in the backyard and hang around Danny all-day, but something’s missing in his life. Most dog owners did not think about what the quarantine will do to their furry friends. They wanted to keep everyone in the family safe. While that is the right thing to do, dog owners should also worry about the mental health of their dogs.
Did you notice that your dog is a little moody these days? Some dog owners reported that their dogs look desolate, anxious, and depressed. Dogs suffer through the same mental agony that people do when their movements are restricted. If your dogs are acting a bit weird these days, it’s because they have been cooped up in the house for so long. Motivate them with fun, entertaining, and safe activities.
Let Them Spend Time Outdoors
Health experts are still unsure about how dogs transmit viruses to humans, but there is evidence that they can spread the virus among themselves. It is always better to err on the side of caution, which means not allowing your dogs to mingle with strangers and other pets. They could be carriers of the virus.
But that doesn’t mean you should restrict them from going outdoors. They should spend time outdoors in your backyard. If you’re worried about them damaging the garden, call decking contractors to add a deck to your yard. Your dogs can spend their days lounging on the deck where they soak up as much sun as they can get. This will have a positive impact on their mental health.
Walk Them Around
With government restrictions lifted, it means you can spend outdoors if you want. Walk your dog around the block or take it to the park. As long as you maintain your distance from people and other pets, you should be fine. Don’t let your dog walk around without a leash, though. You won’t know what places and people your dog licked and sniffed. When you get home, wipe your dog with a damp cloth sprayed with alcohol to remove whatever bacteria or virus that might cling to its fur. You should take a shower and change your clothes, too.
Turn on DogTV
You can get a subscription for DogTV or you can play friendly canine videos on YouTube. It is up to you. It is soothing for dogs to see other canines on television. The music is soothing, too, so it calms and relaxes your pets. These shows will keep them entertained while they struggle with being “imprisoned” at home.
Give Them a Window Seat
Your dog misses the great outdoors. It doesn’t understand what’s going on outside right now. While working, you can give your dog a window seat beside you. Let your dog look out of the window and watch nature. It is calming for them to see what’s going on outside.
Organise Food Games Around the House
You can make your dog’s life entertaining indoors, too. For example, you can hide treats and toys around the house. These games will keep them entertained for many hours. Sometimes, even after they found all the hidden toys, they would still run around the house to look for more. You can also freeze toys and treats inside a block of ice and make your dog work for it.
Find Calming and Soothing Toys and Devices
Do you know that essential oils also work wonders on dogs? Diffuse some essential oils in a room or put a drop of it on your dog’s neck. These have amazing calming properties that work both on humans and pets. You can also buy calming chew toys and calming collars. You can watch a how-to guide for pet massage on YouTube, and give your furry friend a massage.
Like you, your dogs might be stressed, anxious, and depressed. The difference is that they don’t understand why they suddenly can’t go out of the house. Be aware of how your dogs are feeling. If there are sudden changes to their moods and behavior, address those by spending time with them and finding ways to entertain them.