Preparing Your Pets for Holiday Guests
The holiday season may be a little different this year, but chances are you’ll be having more people in your home than you’ve had in a while. Even the most extroverted pet can become anxious or frightened by the sudden arrival of new people, and especially if they’re wearing masks. Here’s some help for easier introductions.
- Try wearing a mask at home from time to time to get your pet used to humans who are wearing them. We’ve all seen how some dogs will start barking at people in hats or dark glasses if they’ve rarely or never seen them before—and masks are no different. Try giving treats whenever you are wearing the mask to create a positive association.
- While wearing the mask, run your dog through some commands so he or she gets used to your voice while masked. Once your dog is comfortable with this, you can try introducing new people, one at a time, who are wearing masks.
- Consider putting your pet in another room with toys, treats, water and a bed when having a party or gathering. This way your dog, and especially your cat, will be less stressed. If your pet will be out when guests are in the home, it’s important to make he or she has a safe place to retreat and be left alone, such as a bedroom or crate.
- Preserve your routine. Dogs especially are creatures of habit, and it keeps them feeling secure. In the days before you have guests, try to see that your dog’s schedule stays intact as much as possible.
- Wear ‘em out. A long play session or walk prior to the arrival of guests will help your pet be calmer when there’s guests in the home.
Have questions about preparing your pets for the holidays or need more training tips? Don’t hesitate to call us at (440) 585-3600.