When traveling for the holidays, it can get complicated when you have limited space and furry pets. While some accommodations and adventures are suitable for bringing a pet, it is not always recommended. A sense of displacement and disruption can be hard on a dog. Not to mentions the new sounds, smells, and sights that can be stressful for both an owner and a pup. Sometimes leaving your pet at home with a sitter or in a boarding facility is the best solution to ensuring they are comfortable and content. However, this option takes proper training and preparation for your pets. Pet Butler has what you need to keep your pets happy while you’re away.
How do I prepare my pup for my absence?
Mix Up Your Return Time
Before you decide to book flights, understand how your pet reacts to your absence. Some dogs and especially puppies require more attention. Dogs that suffer from separation anxiety can be especially sensitive to time alone. If this is the case, practice leaving your dog for varying periods of time and don’t encourage excitability upon your return. Mix up your departure routine so dogs don’t hop on the crazy train each time the car keys start to jangle. For those of us who have are home-bound, it is beneficial for a pet owner to give pets time alone. It ensures their confidence and comfort when you finally take that much needed break.
Give Them A Comfort Token
Certain objects with special significance to your pet can help them cope with your absence – giving them a sense of familiarity is both calming and reassuring. Toys, treats, blankets, and other items can all serve this purpose. Your scent on clothes or blankets can similarly provide a sense of normalcy. Tools like Thundershirts, music playlists, and Adaptil diffusers can be utilized to manage stress. Test out what works best for your pet and don’t be afraid to experiment with different options.
Leave Them With Someone They Trust
Once you trust your dog will behave, it’s time to introduce them to the dog sitter. When choosing someone to watch over your pet, opt for people who you know well. Ideal that would be family, friends, or a neighbor that is likely familiar with your dog and home already. If that isn’t an option, make sure to set up a meeting prior to leaving. Let the sitter introduce themselves to your pet and offer a treat; both dog and sitter will feel more relaxed and a positive association will develop between the two. Then, explain all your dog’s needs to the sitter and write them down on a list. This should include a schedule for feeding, bathroom breaks, walks/playtimes, any medication given, and a list of emergency contacts. It’s important for dogs to get adequate playtime. The more often they’re kept in the kennel or just stuck inside, the more likely they are to misbehave, become anxious, and potentially destructive.
Take Them To The Dog Hotel
If you’re going to be away from home for weeks at a time, consider using a boarding facility. These kennels are built to take care of pets for an extended stay. Your dog will receive plenty of attention, interaction with other pooches, and top-notch dog care. Research what the best care centers are near you and get in touch with them personally before you make any decisions.
How do I say goodbye to my pet without making us both sad?
Before you leave, there are a few things you need to double–check. Check your pup’s collar to make sure the information is current. Leave plenty of food, treats, and a supply of medications and medical records. Check again with the sitter to make sure they’re prepared and understand what your dog needs. After you’ve set up care for your dog, the only thing you have left to do is say goodbye – but do it the right way. A nice hug and maybe a small treat is fine, but don’t overdo it. Dogs understand human emotions to a degree and often reflect our state of mind. If you make a scene out of leaving, they might become upset or worried. If you act anxious or stressed, they will too. It’s better to slip out relatively quietly and let them go on with their day. Pretending everything is normal is sometimes the best way to go.
At Pet Butler, we understand that leaving your pet behind is hard. We know you want to give them the best care you can. That is why we specialize in caring for your pet’s special area by scooping up their waste. So, call 1-800-PET-BUTLER to learn how we can make your pet’s life happier, healthier, and cleaner.