When you work all day and then come home and have to take care of the house, family, and other things, it can be hard to make sure that your dog is getting enough exercise, attention, and socialization. Sometimes, as much as we walk them, play with them, and let them romp in the yard, our dogs need more. You may crate your dog while you’re not home or hire a dog walker but that still means she’s spending a lot of time alone. Most of us work 9 to 5 jobs and that means your dog is left alone at least 8 hours a day. This can cause boredom, destructive behavior, depression, and laziness.
What can you do?
The best solution is to find a dog daycare near your house. It’s a pet service that has been around for years but is catching on and growing. Your dog will get to interact with dogs of all ages, sizes, and energy levels. It will improve her socialization and can be vital in terms of curbing behavioral problems. Younger dogs can learn how to play properly, learn body language of other dogs, and learn pack integration making them better canine citizens.
Dogs that don’t go to dog daycare may sometimes only know their owners and no other dogs. They may not socialize enough at the dog parks, bad weather, cold winter days, means weeks and months without playing with other dogs. This can cause isolation and dogs to not be as friendly as possible with their canine buddies. Your dog loves to play, needs to be stimulated, and will get pets and hugs from the staff.
Many dogs who go to dog daycare love it and know when the car makes that left turn into the parking lot. They will become overwhelmed with excitement and might pull you to the door. Plus you know your dog is getting exercise, being watched, and making friends. Some behavior problems may even start to fade away like anxiety, destructive behavior, and uncertainty at meeting new people.
Also, for the time your dog is at the daycare, she will be asked to sit, stay, and have other commands reinforced. She will be called by her name to “come” and learn what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior. If you have been working on teaching your dog to not jump up on people and let the daycare know, they will tell your dog to not jump with the command you use. Many daycares are very open to trying to help reinforce and positively reward behavior with praise, touch, and fun.
Doggy daycare is obviously more expensive than leaving your dog on its own but it is worth every penny. A tired dog is a happy dog. A tired dog is also a well-behaved dog. A tired dog also means that when you come home tired, you’ll be wind down together and have a great evening.