According to the Best Friends Animal Society, separation anxiety is common among dogs. It can start at any life stage, to any breed. Some experts believe that the anxiety develops because dogs are pack animals, and they see their humans as part of their pack. Once their humans leave them, their sense of security goes away, which leads to anxiety. Boarding a dog that has separation anxiety will be extra difficult. If you want to know how to board your anxious dog, here’s what you should know.
Train for Coping
As a responsible pet owner, you recognize your dog’s needs. If you know that your dog has separation anxiety, you can work with your dog to remove the anxiety. You can start to leave your dog alone for short periods and then reward your dog each time. Lengthen the “alone” time and praise your dog more. It would also be helpful to introduce a spacious crate as a “safe place.” This training may take time. Consider starting this process months before you leave.
Research Other Services
A kennel is not the only pet boarding facility available out there. If you are leaving your dog behind, choose the right pet boarding service. Anxious dogs may feel more comfortable in your home. For this setup, a pet sitter who knows your dog well may be the only option. You may even ask a close relative or a friend to care for your dog. These alternatives can help make your dog feel more at ease and comfortable while you are away.
Be Open About the Issue
Talk to the care providers about your dog’s anxiety issue. Tell then your concerns about how your dog might react with other people or other dogs. Experienced sitters or care providers will consider everything that you tell them. Dedicated pet boarding facilities have established methods for helping dogs with anxiety separation.
Fill your dog’s backpack with objects that have the smells of home. Familiar things with familiar odors help calm your dog down. They can even help your dog sleep better. It would help as well to pack his toys, water bowl, food bowl, towel, and bed. You should also pack one of your old shirts or pillowcases that carry your scent.
Choose a Boarding Facility That Has Many Activities
The pet boarding facility you choose should be full of dog-friendly activities. It should have enough space for training and socialization. The care providers should have activity programs set for your dog. There should also be opportunities for your dog to make friends and play with them. If your dog is always busy, then your dog does not have the time to be anxious. Your dog would be too tired to miss you by the end of the day.
Dogs with separation anxiety have special needs. The type of pet boarding should address these needs properly. At Montana Veterinary Hospital & Boarding, we make sure that your dog always receives individualized care. Please visit our facility in Bozeman, Montana, for an in-person consultation. You can call us at (406) 586-2019 if you want to schedule a facility tour or make inquiries about our pet boarding packages.