September 2, 2010
For the past couple of weeks, students everywhere have shown signs of that seasonal bug, the Back to School blues. The end of summer means less time to play outside with friends, and more time devoted to classes and homework. That’s enough to put most kids in a bit a funk, but did you know the family dog might also share their pain?
That’s right, dogs can suffer from the Back to School blues, too. This week, Dog Tails gives families tips to help their dog manage the transition from summer vacation to a new school year. By following this prescribed “homework,” you can help banish these blues soon and restore your dog to a happy state.
Dogs are sensitive to changes in their daily routine. Back to school represents a particular challenge. Days once filled with outdoor play, activities and attention are now mostly solitary and a lot less exciting. To ease the transition, experts suggest slowly adjusting the dog’s schedule to the new routine. Shift playtime and walks to morning and evening hours, and away from school hours.
This gradual transition can help avoid the dreaded curse of back to school season: separation anxiety. These feelings often cause dogs to act out in destructive ways, including excessive barking and chewing or eating things they shouldn’t.