The Covid-19 pandemic has made a huge impact on all of our lives and for many of us, it has changed the way we live, work and socialise. Restrictions and lockdowns have dramatically altered our daily routines, especially for people who have been working from home.
Being able to spend more time with our dogs and other household pets during this period, and having them at home with us while we work has definitely been one of the positives to come out of the pandemic. Our pets have been a great comfort to us, helping us to feel less lonely when we weren’t able to leave the house as much as we used to.
But how have the lockdowns affected our pups?
For the past two years we have lived more indoor lifestyles, and just as we have become more insular in the way we live, so too have dogs, resulting in less time outdoors, being social with other dogs, going to daycare, playing in the dog parks or simply going on long walks with their owner. Dogs are social animals and although our pups have enjoyed more of our human company in recent times, they are lacking in time spent with other dogs, often resulting in socialisation issues.
Dogs have also had less exposure to environments and activities that stimulate their senses (sounds, smells etc) and less opportunities to exercise and participate in activities that keep them physically active and mentally stimulated.
Now that restrictions have eased and people are starting to go back to the office/workplace, our dogs are having to adapt to our change in routines yet again. Many pups are reactive or anxious due to a lack of socialisation and exposure during the pandemic lockdowns. Some dogs are struggling with separation anxiety and socialisation issues and others are fearful of being away from their owners and being home alone for longer periods of time than they have been used to.
A proven and effective way to combat these issues is to send your pup to doggy daycare. At daycare your dog is never alone, spending hours of fun with both humans and dogs throughout the day. Dogs love structure and doggy daycare can help to create more consistency in their weekly routine, whilst making them feel more secure by not being left alone during the day.
Daycare also provides many benefits in terms of their mental and physical wellbeing. Where many dogs may not have been getting as much exercise as they needed during lockdown, daycare will allow them to run around, make new furry (and human!) friends and enjoy physical and mentally stimulating activities that will be sure to wear them out, leaving them tired but content at the end of the day.
With so many exciting things to look forward to at daycare, your pup won’t have time to miss you, but of course they will be super happy to see you when it’s pick up time.
As we emerge from two years of restrictions and lockdowns, return to our places of work and get back to relative ‘normality’ in our daily lives, it’s important to consider how your dog may have been impacted by these changes in both yours and their routine. Creating a structured and consistent routine for your dog will help to ease their anxiety and make them feel safe and secure, ensuring their optimal health and wellbeing.