Lockdown Advice: Creating an indoor routine

Lots of dogs are loving their owners being at home during the lockdown.

But for some dogs the changes are stressful. And we need to consider the effects on our dogs when we go back to work or school.

  1. If dogs are used to the same things happening at the same time each day, they can get worried by change.

    Stick to normal daily routines as much as possible.

    Feed them at the same time each day. Have set times for training or play when you might previously have gone out for walks.

    Factor into the day everything your dog needs from you:

    • food
    • walks
    • going to the toilet
    • play
    • training
    • rest/relaxation
    • sleep
    • hanging out together
  2.  If your dog is used to being left alone while you're out, it's important to maintain their ability to cope when alone .

    Factor in time apart from your dog each day – for example leave your dog in another part of the house for periods of time whilst working from home, so they are not with you all the time. Try and leave them in the house alone when going for essential trips as well. This will help them cope better when everyone goes back to work or school.

     Watch our video for top tips.

  3. It’s likely that your dog is missing out on some of their normal walks and have less opportunities to run around outside. This could leave them with an excess of energy.

    You can help your dog by introducing regular activity sessions to use up that energy. Play, training and enrichment sessions that are different each day will help them to use their brains and noses as well as their bodies, and be fun for both of you.

     

  4. If your dog's used to sleeping during the day they might be losing out on vital sleep now that there's people at home all the time.

    Build in time for quieter activities each day. Encourage your dog to relax while things are less frenetic.

    Provide your dog with their own safe-haven in the form of a ‘doggy-den’ area.

    Add a comfy bed/blanket and some of their favourite toys so they can relax whenever they want. Make sure everyone understands that your dog must be left alone to relax when they are in their den.