Dogs Who Feel Stressed Staying Home Alone - Part 3

Continuing on from our last Dog-Friendly Office Project story, we would like to share with you the latest results of our survey on leaving pets at home.

As we mentioned in the last post, the Dog-Friendly Office Project is currently conducting a survey into helping reduce the stress of pets left at home. From our findings, we discovered a tendency for many pets to feel stressed when they are left alone at home.

In this blog, we would like to look into some of the occasions when pet owners feel their pets get stressed and how they are attempting to mitigate such stress as much as possible. 

We asked our respondents to our survey what some of the behaviors or signs that your dog might show when they are stressed are and the answers were as follows:

  • Shredding toilet sheets, beds, etc
  • Not going to the toilet in the correct place
  • Refusal to drink water (because they are trying to hold off going to the toilet) 
  • Refusal to eat
  • Licking shedding fur or paws
  • Increased agitation to the slightest stimulus
  • Fighting with other dogs in the house
  • Barking or whimpering
  • Consumption of fecal matter

Some pets may seem okay when left at home alone but as mentioned above, their stress may be hard to see, even by their owners.

So, what do pet owners do to reduce their pet’s stress when they are away from home? 

Here are some of the answers we received from our respondents: 

  • Shortening the amount of time they leave their pets at home alone
  • Returning home as soon as possible after going out
  • Using doggy daycare centers or pet sitters
  • Sharing the responsibility among family members so that someone can always be at home
  • Leaving the pet with another family member or friend in the local area 

We also found that some owners are putting more focus into providing a comfortable environment for their pet when they go out:

  • Using cognitive-focused toys around for the dog to play with to keep them entertained 
  • Leaving the air conditioner on to maintain a comfortable room temperature
  • Leaving the lights on
  • Leaving radios, televisions, or music on to avoid the stress of silence
  • Using circulating water fountains for fresh drinking water
  • Installing and using pet cameras
  • Using automatic feeders
  • Providing a comfortable place to rest and setting up multiple toilets spaces
  • Providing special toys for the pet to play with only when they are left at home

Other responses included:

  • Taking your dog for a long walk or play with toys before leaving them alone at home 
  • Leaving the house quietly without saying good-bye to your pet to reduce separation anxiety 
  • Taking your dog out with you on holidays or days off so that their life is more simulating 

Judging from the response to the survey, it seems that everyone is making various efforts to accommodate their pets’ needs. In the future, we are planning to carry out some tests using pet cameras to see if the above ideas can actually help reduce our pets’ stress levels. 

In the next blog, we will introduce our recommended pet cameras and surveillance devices trialed by the free stitch team.

Click here to see a news roundup of the Dog-Friendly Office Project so far.

For more information, check out the Dog-Friendly Office Project SNS!