Dog Depression: Getting your pet ready for post-pandemic life

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas — As millions of Americans continue to live a life working from home, there will be a time when they will have to go back to the 9 to 5 grind.

If you have a pet, this could be a big change for them.

“They might become destructive just because of lack of attention and boredom,” explained dog trainer Cynthia Kendrick with Dog Obedience Inc.

Kendrick has trained animals for 25 years and specializes in one-on-one training.

“It’s much faster and effective than group training,” said Kendrick.

The change in routine can bring out destructive behavior in your pet. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, ASPCA, “separation anxiety is most commonly seen in pets. Separation anxiety is triggered when dogs or cats become upset because of separation from their guardians, or the people they’re attached to.”

Separation anxiety is often the reason why dogs will chew through their kennels, doors or those expensive shoes you thought were safe in the closet.

Sadly, because owners don’t recognize the warning signs, pets end up at the pound.

“Every single dog, every single cat they are individuals.” explained Luis Quintanilla, Executive Director of Humane Society of Harlingen. “Owner surrendered animals, for behavioral reasons, is fairly common, and I think for the most part a lot of that can be explained by just the lack of experience.”

As the clock winds down to shelter-in-place orders being lifted, full time work means part-time play time with your pup and those destructive habit could pop up.

“It’s really important not to make a big deal before you go,” said Kendrick.

He advisese owners don’t use a ‘baby voice’ when leaving to work.

“Flat-out just take your keys and go out the door.”

The reason to drop the baby talk? That tone is associated with playtime, the ritual voice change is a major let down when it isn’t fulfilled.

Ahead of going back to work or not working from home, Kendrick suggests practice leaving without fanfare.

“Go sit in the car and come back without greeting them.” Limit excitement and invest in quality chew toys, “get something they’re going to want to chew on.”

Most importantly, be patient and practice routines.

If you need one-on-one training, click here for Dog Obedience Inc’s Facebook page

For adoptions, donations and volunteering visit www.facebook.com/HumaneSocietyofHarlingen/

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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