Ten dogs and their owners were separated twice for 3 minutes. In the first case, the dogs were pet for one minute before separation. In the second, they were ignored before leaving. The dogs were on a leash at all times, all while being closely observed by researchers who monitored their behavior and physiology.
© Samson Katt / Pexels, © Samson Katt / Pexels
The results showed that, even though the level of cortisol in the dogs’ saliva didn’t change, petting them made them more relaxed for longer. The pups were able to live through the separation from the owner more calmly. Also, their heart rate was lower than when they were ignored.
Staying alone should be taught.
© Samson Katt / Pexels
Despite the opportunity to calm your dog with petting, it’s important to train your dog to stay home alone.
- Start with teaching your dog to stay in their place in your presence.
- Then, train them to stay while you’re leaving. Begin with a short distance within the room, then the house. Increase your time away.
- When you see that your dog feels good about your absence, go outside for a short while. Then, gradually increase the time of your absence.
Always reward your dog for their good behavior while training. And track your pup’s habits and conditions of their stay to make their alone time more comfortable.
How often do you pet your dog? Do you pet them regularly before leaving?