Dog owners returning to work put a strain on their four-legged friends.
Pandemic puppies are dogs adopted by families during the COVID-19 pandemic when many people were working and studying from home.
Now that things are returning to normal, local trainers and shelters say these dogs are having a hard time adjusting.
Unfortunately, this is something dog trainers and shelters say they’ve seen an increase in.
“They don’t like it when you first walk,” said Melanie Titzel, a dog owner.
Melanie Titzel has two dogs of her own, but she said her five-month-old golden doodler suffers from separation anxiety.
“I have long days. I’ve set them up at home with a little house and a dog door so they can go outside, but when I go to work they don’t like it much,” Titzel said.
Local dog trainers said they’ve been seeing more dogs suffering from separation anxiety now that their owners are returning to a more normal pre-pandemic schedule.
“Dogs love a structured day and that’s probably why they’re scared because suddenly their people are gone and now what,” said Els Cox, dog trainer and owner of dog school Something Els.
“He’s super relaxed when I’m home, but when I leave, no matter who I leave him with, whether he’s alone or with my husband, he’s very anxious. He cries for me all the time,” said Rebecca Zitalone, a dog owner.
Many owners work with trainers to try and help their four-legged family member adjust to spending more time alone at home.
Unfortunately, many families are seeing local animal shelters giving up their pets.
“Unfortunately, we’ve seen an increase in callers saying we just don’t have the time that we had when we were working from home now that we’re going back to the office,” said Ruth Thompson, owner of ANNA Shelter.
Experts say there are some tips and tricks you can do to help your dog when he’s suffering from separation anxiety.
“When they know they’re going back to work, start practicing letting the dog for five seconds or five minutes and see how that goes. Maybe set up a camera to see how the dog is doing,” Cox said.
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The trainers hope you call them if you have problems with your dog at home.