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5 Ways to Keep Your Pet Happy When You’re Away

  • July 15, 2013
  • 4:30 pm
5 Ways to Keep Your Pet Happy When You’re Away

Much to their chagrin, our pets can’t be with us all the time. And unfortunately, they tend to express this disappointment through destructive behaviors like shredding the couch, munching on a tasty shoe, or leaving smelly surprises around the house.

Our animals act out because they miss us, and home just isn’t the same without their favorite human(s). Making small changes to their environment though can lead to significant improvements in their behavior, and may even save a few pairs of shoes. Here are 5 tips for keeping your pet from stressing out when you’re away:

1. Get a pet sitter. If you’ve got a few extra bucks to spend, hiring a pet sitter/walker can make all the difference in your pet’s conduct while you’re away. Your pet will get a potty break, playtime, and some good social interaction, and you’ll get to relax a bit knowing your furry family member is taken care of.

2. Keep it clean. Just like us, pets like their space to be clean. Before you leave, empty the litter box, take out the trash, and put away as much clutter as you can. There will be less for your pet to chew on, and you will create an all-around nicer environment.

3. Leave a bit of yourself. One mess that you can leave lying around is your dirty laundry—pets love to curl up with stuff that smells like you, and it can be incredibly comforting to a stressed out animal. If your pet is a chewer, only leave stuff that you can handle being destroyed (you know, just in case).

4. Encourage play time. Make sure your pet channels his energy positively by leaving lots of toys around the house. Leave at least one in every room so that if your pet wanders in there they will find a fun surprise!

5. Turn on the TV. Give your pet some sense of company by leaving the television on for them while you’re gone. Keep the volume relatively low and put on something fun and happy—like a kids’ channel.

Do you have any other ideas for keeping your pet happy while you’re away? Share in the comments!


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Selected by Laura Drucker, TAILS Editor

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9:33AM PST on Feb 5, 2015


9:33AM PST on Feb 5, 2015


12:57PM PST on Jan 31, 2015


6:21AM PST on Jan 10, 2015

Very recently, yesterday actually, I bought my German Shepherd, Sheba, an interactive toy. The idea being that when I went out she could play for ages trying to get the treats out of the compartments. Four lids and eight compartments. Last night I showed her how it worked and she got the hang of it quickly. This morning, she had progressed enormously. Holding one of the lids between her jaws and resting the toy on her front leg she managed to sort of lift the toy and shake the treats out. You ideas will probably work better.

4:54PM PDT on Aug 15, 2014


3:45PM PDT on Jul 19, 2014


6:24AM PDT on Jul 19, 2014

I work close enough that I can come home for lunch. Then is a good time of play and attention. Even if it's short it's good. My friends ALWAYS run to great me. They know I love them.

7:53PM PDT on Jun 23, 2014

Thank you for sharing

7:53PM PDT on Jun 23, 2014

Thank you for sharing

7:18PM PST on Jan 15, 2014

As a pet sitter, these are some of the same things that I suggest to my clients... especially those that are leaving on vacation.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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