Have you heard the term “pandemic puppy”? Or “quarantine puppy”? After the city shut down in March 2020, there were a few weeks where shelters across NYC were completely empty of adoptable dogs. In addition, puppy sales were through the roof! During a time of extreme stress, people found comfort in adding a furry friend to the family. Now, fast forward a year and the city (and the world) is slowly beginning to reopen. But what will this new generation of dogs and puppies do when their parents start to work in an office again? Or when their parents want to spend a night out with their (human) friends?
Dog trainers everywhere are getting ready to combat the wave of separation anxiety in our dogs. Even dogs that have been a part of the family for years have had 12 months to grow accustomed to spending 24/7 with their parents. But it’s not just trainers who can help your dog get through this transitionary period – consider bringing them to daycare!
We hear the term “separation anxiety” so much these days, but what exactly is it? It can manifest in a number of ways:
- incessant digging or scratching at doors or windows in an attempt to follow their parents
- destructive chewing
- howling, barking or whining
- having accidents inside
There are plenty of reasons why a dog may be experiencing separation anxiety (including being too young to understand why they are being left alone for the first time, having a traumatic experience like being left in a shelter, or loss of a family member), but the anxiety that this new generation of dogs is prone to experiencing is certainly related to the pandemic. For months now, these dogs have had their parents at their every beck and call, day and night. And for some of these dogs, they have never experienced a life of being left alone!
That’s where we come in. Because why leave your dog sitting home alone, worrying about when you’ll return, when you can bring them to a place where they can socialize and play? Camp Canine provides your dog with a stimulating environment to take their minds off of the fact that they can’t see their parents. At Camp Canine, your pup can make doggy friends and human friends, and they can play and nap as they please in a safe and secure environment.
Here are some ways we are helping new parents:
In addition to daycare, try these tips to help soothe separation anxiety:
- Don’t make a big deal out of arrivals and departures — ignore your dog for the first few minutes after you arrive or before you depart, then calmly pet them.
- Leave your dog with recently worn clothes that smell like you.
- Establish a word or action that you use every time you leave that tells your dog you’ll be back.
- Consider using an over-the-counter calming product that reduces fearfulness in dogs
- If you find yourself in need of a dog trainer, we recommend Andrea Arden.