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Back to School? Say it isn't so!

SEPTEMBER 14, 2016 | BY: JUDITH

September already?

At risk of sounding too cliche I will still say WOW, this year has sure gone by fast! I am sure everyone is like me and looking at their calendar wondering what happened to the summer season of fun, relaxation, picnics, camping, swimming, and hiking? And now September 6th and 7th marks that it is time to go back to school.

Parents you may take a moment to pause for quiet celebration. You deserve it!

In the last minute mad dash to get all the school supplies, new clothes, registration and all that hubbub it can become very easy to get sidetracked on other important members of your family. No, I don’t mean your spouse or even your Aunt Gertrude living in your spare room for an indeterminate amount of time. (We will talk about that next time) I am talking about your other baby -  your fur baby.

During the summer most likely the amount of excitement brewing in the home is at an all time high. More people are home and bustling about - and in most cases there is always someone there to entertain our four legged friends. Taking them on adventures, plenty of tummy rubs and special cuddle times is what your pet has known over this time and now all that changes.  Yes, fall schedules are starting up and this means a big change for your pet at home. To get a better understanding of what it was like in other homes, I reached out to a few friends and asked them what it would some of these changes would mean in their household?

Where there any suggestions that I could share with you?

 

MIKE & SAMMY

What did summer look like for you and your pet?

Summer for Sammy and I is all about trips to the cottage. Sammy loves to go on car rides and we especially love spending time in the outdoors. Sammy loves to swim and go for hikes -  but his favourite thing to do is climbing the mountain trails behind the cottage. We have so much outdoor fun.

How does this change when fall comes?

Unfortunately, we close the cottage early fall and prepare for the Canadian winter. This means less time spent outdoors and more time spent inside our apartment.

What can/do you do to make sure that your pet adjusts to their new schedule?

I know that the main thing missing from Sammy’s fall schedule is outdoor activity. I can tell he misses running around outside and can seem anxious after too many hours being stuck inside. This is why as soon as thing slow down I take Sammy to my local dog parks and agility classes multiple times a week. This gives him something to look forward to during the week and helps him stay active while easing some of his anxiety. Just book some extra play time is my suggestion for people in my situation.

 

GENEVIEVE & ROSCO

What did summer look like for you and your pet?

This summer was so eventful! I adopted Rosco in July - Rosco is 2 years old and was a rescue from my local shelter. I cannot even begin to tell you how amazing life is with Rosco. Our summer has been spent connecting with each other and getting him comfortable with his new family. To say that we are connected at the hip is no exaggeration.

How does this change when it comes to fall?

Even more than ever this fall is a huge change for Rosco and I. This will be our first time apart from each  other for more than an hour at a time. I am a teacher and I have the summers off but as soon as September starts it is work work work. This means 8 hours away from him!

Have you noticed your pet’s behavior has seemed impacted due to the change?

Over the last few days I have noticed some things when I get home. First thing was a few ‘Accidents” in the house, then I noticed the blinds on the windows looked like he tried to shred them, along with some very noticeable scratches on the door. I know that he is feeling anxious and this is his way of telling me that he is unhappy with the sudden change. I have hired a trainer to help me with this transition.

What can/do you do to make sure that your pet adjusts to their new schedule?

The first thing I have done through the transition is to slowly taken a few hours at a time away from Rosco to get him accustomed to me being gone for periods of time. I started at 1 hour and have made it all the way to 4! When it comes to my new best friend there is nothing that I won’t try to make sure he is adjusting well. My trainer suggested that I take Rosco for a morning walk and evening walk after dinner but in addition to that,  I have decided to hire a dog walker to come take Rosco for an hour long adventure at lunch time. This makes me feel so much better.

I am hoping that he will enjoy getting out of the house and getting some fresh air until I get home. Try it.

 

ISAAC & TIMBIT

What did summer look like for you and your pet?

We have a perfect routine going for Timbit and I. When I return from work promptly at 5:30 we always go straight to the park and play, followed by a doggie date and finally finished with a treat from Starbucks. This is our daily routine and during the week we never break it - Timbit is 8 years old and she loves looking forward to our daily adventure.

How does this change when it comes to fall?

Normally fall wouldn't bring any change to our routine but this fall I am starting a new job. For this job my schedule will be all over the place in the beginning. Sometimes I will be working nights and sometime I will be starting early. This means that our perfected routine will go up in flames.

What are you most worried about ?

Timbit of course! I am so worried that she won't understand what is happening. In her eyes she may still expect me to be home at 5:30 and whn I don’t show up she will be devastated. I want to make this transition as smooth as possible without disturbing my princess Timbit.

What can/do you do to make sure that your pet adjusts to their new schedule?

To make sure that Timbit adjusts to our new timeline I have found a local doggie daycares in my area to take Timbit to when I am working late. Believe it or not there are amazing people out there who can help you. This will allow her to play with other dogs and spend the time outside that she loves. Sometimes you just have to think outside of the box.

 

Here is my top 5 ways to help your pet adjust to Fall

  • Make sure to keep your pet’s exercise regular. If you are walking your child to the bus stop make sure you bring fido, and don't forget about those evening walks when you get home.
  • Keep alert for signs of stress and anxiety. These signs may be giant or barely noticeable but it is very important to detect any signs early in order to keep your pet happy and healthy.
  • Have a special toy that is only introduced when you leave for the day. This will give your pet something to look forward to when you are gone.
  • Make sure to tend to your pet’s needs as soon as you get home. Before you start prepping dinner or doing homework with the kids.
  • Give them some extra love when you get home. LOVE LOVE LOVE.

 

When in doubt - some extra Pumpkin Spice Hearts from Holistic Blend can make any situation better!

Everyone knows fall = pumpkin spice.