The PAWS Blog

How to Prepare Your Dog for Time Away From Home – Our Guide

As a dog owner, you probably feel like you and your furry friend are inseparable that you even bring them to events or pet-friendly places so that you do not need to be away for long. However, there will be trips where you cannot bring them along with you.

In times like those, you will have to prepare them for a few days to weeks without you. Fortunately, following a few easy guidelines below will help you set your dog up for stability as you leave for an extended trip.

  1. Bond before you leave

Take a walk or bring your dog to the park before you leave him with a dog daycare or a sitter. This accomplishes two things. First, you get to bond before parting, and because dogs are sociable by nature, they would appreciate the time you spend with them.

Second, when you give your dog regular exercise, they are likely to be more relaxed during the day they would have to transfer. Expending their energy will get your dog to sleep better and be calm when you have to leave.

  1. Let your dog get to know his temporary home

If time allows, visit the dog daycare with your pet and do this a couple of weeks before your intended leave date. Let him get to know the grounds and the staff, and ask if he can play with some of the pets who would become his neighbors soon. This way, when it is time for you to leave, he will feel more acclimatized to his surroundings.

Talk to the staff in charge of your dog’s separation anxiety. If he has untreated anxiety, or if he is in the middle of behavioral modification, your long trip might trigger him. Ask the pet sitter to be mindful of any changes in his mood that might point to him being agitated about your absence.

  1. Get calming tools for when you separate

Make sure your dog travels with his favorite bedding, toys, and treats. You can also consider bringing a used blanket along with his supplies. In contrast to a clean sheet, a used one would bring him more comfort because it has scents that will remind him of home.

You might also want to purchase new toys and treats for your pet. Do not show these to him before the trip, and open it only on the day you will leave him at the dog daycare so that they will keep him busy and helps take the focus off of your departure. Keep in mind, though, that dogs can be possessive of brand new toys, which might be a factor to consider when you leave him in a dog kennel or daycare center.

  1. Be confident and stay calm throughout

Dogs are wired to detect people’s emotions. If you are sad or stressed, your dog will pick up on it and act accordingly. They might start barking and refuse to leave your side, or they might snap at ev