It is that time of year again! Many families are headed to the malls and supercenters to stock up on school clothes and supplies. It can be an exciting time of year for parents and kids alike. With all the hustle and bustle, it can be easy to overlook our fur kids. It’s so important to remember that our pets will have to adjust to all the changes that the new school schedule brings too!
Pets thrive on routines and schedules just like our two-legged children. With children headed back to the class room, many pets will have more alone time. Changes in normal routines could potentially cause behavioral issues or anxiety. Being prepared and considering these practical steps can help the transition back to school go more smoothly for the entire family.
Consider starting your day a little earlier.
By starting your day 30-45 minutes earlier in the morning, you can build in extra one-on-one time with your pet. By increasing some morning playtime with your pet, you can help them burn off some energy prior to your departure. After all, a tired pet is usually a good pet!
While out shopping for school supplies, make a stop at your local pet store.
While there are aisles and aisles of toys to choose from, try to find toys that will stimulate your pet’s mind. Many stores have puzzles that incorporate treats and moving objects in order to create play and occupy time. Not only does enriching their play time keep them occupied, it helps increase their activity level during the day and can lend a hand (or paw) in maintaining a healthy weight.
Incorporate family time with your pet.
Evening walks or trips to the park with your pet can help both your pets and your family stay healthy. These types of outings provide a way for family bonding that includes your pet while instilling in your children the importance of caring for their pet’s emotional and physical needs.
Treats are a great way to motivate and reward your pet.
Kong toys (and other toys that can be stuffed with healthy treats) can provide not only a special reward, but also occupy your pet and keep them busy in your absence. Peanut butter, apples and banana slices, and baby carrots are very yummy, and are a great way to give your pet something special.