For many of us with pets, our animals are part of the family. But with busy work schedules, school, or running around with the kids, we might not have as much time with our dogs as we want. Since we have an open pet policy at MCLife, we have no breed, size or weight restrictions which means any and all dogs are welcome. So with all of these dogs living at our properties, a few are bound to have separation anxiety or trouble being left alone. Especially if you just moved into a new apartment with new surroundings, your dog might need a little help adjusting.
We are going to talk about strategies to help your pooch adjust to apartment living and to ensure that restless energy doesn’t lead to ruined furniture, annoyed neighbors or unnecessary stress. The first thing to remember is that a bored, energetic dog means that they are more likely to get into trouble, bother the neighbors by barking and obsess over the fact that you’re not there which only serves to heighten separation anxiety. If you have a dog with separation anxiety, then you will want to write some of these down.
A good place to start is to incorporate 30 minutes to an hour of aerobic exercise each day. Take your dog out for a walk in the morning before work, or when you get home. Taking the extra time to expel some of your dog’s energy can save you a lot of hassle.
Another good strategy is to provide your dog with healthy distractions. Try getting a Kong toy (large rubber bouncy rubber toys) and filling it with a dog treat. Your four legged friend will be wholly consumed by the task at hand and won’t stop until the treat has been eaten. There are a lot of great interactive puzzle toys that require your dog to move pieces around and focus to retrieve treats. Using dog toys is a great way to distract your dog, fend of loneliness and boredom, and can even help behavioral problems.
If your dog suffers from high levels of separation anxiety, Modern Dog Magazine recommends confining your dog to one area in the apartment where the last amount of damage can be done, and the least amount of noise can be made to disturb the neighbors. You can also leave a radio or TV on at a very low volume for distracting background noise.
To help your dog adjust to being alone, you can also practice by putting up a baby gate and barricading your dog into one area while you are home. This helps teach them that they don’t have to be at your side and being alone isn’t a reason to freak out.
We all want our pets to happy and with some of these simple steps you can help do that. Think about it this way, when you are left alone you can watch television, go on your computer, work out, enjoy your hobbies – the options are endless for you. But there aren’t many options for your dog. So getting them exercise before you leave for hours at a time, and providing them with interactive toys are great ways to keep them stimulated and entertained while you’re away.
Try these strategies out and see if they help. A relaxed dog means you don’t have to worry about your apartment being destroyed or your neighbors being annoyed by endless barking. Together we can all live the good life at MC! We have our open pet policy in each of our regions: Phoenix, Tucson, San Antonio, Austin, Dallas, Houston and Tulsa. We guarantee residents the same great service and quality of life. If you think MCLife would be a good fit for you, we want to hear from you! You can view availability on each site, book tours and contact our leasing agents with any questions.