4 Things That Can Help Prevent Common Doggie Disasters at Home
If you’re a dog owner, you undoubtedly know the reward of the special bond that comes with it. Dogs serve as a great example of loyalty and unconditional love, and most of the time they bring us nothing but joy. However, what about when we come home to a big potty accident in the doorway or a chewed-up couch cushion? These are moments that all canine lovers would rather not experience. While there’s no way to guarantee that your pooch will never cause another mess, there are four things you can do that will help prevent and lessen the frequency of the most common doggie disasters at home.
All dogs need some level of exercise. Depending on the breed and age, that could mean anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour and a half each day. Dogs have energy that needs to be let out, and if that doesn’t happen outside, it will eventually be released through destructive measures in your home. To prevent such disasters, take your dog for a walk at least once a day. If you have the room in your backyard, letting them run around and playing games with them (i.e. fetch, flyball, soccer, frisbee, etc.) can also help burn energy.
Along with giving your dog physical exercise, it’s important that they have ways to engage their mind as well. Make time to play and interact with your pooch at home, and purchase some puzzle toys for when you’re gone. Having such toys around the house will lower the risk of your dog becoming bored and finding something else to get their paws on. If you try this and the problem persists, look into doggie daycare, as it’s a safe and supervised environment where your dog can stimulate his or her mind and play with other dogs.
Training is another vital part of preventing doggie disasters in your home. Even when it seems like your dog has chewed up your phone charger or pooped on the rug to get back at you for feeding them late, it could just be that they don’t know any better or have forgotten. Especially if your dog is young or has switched homes, training is essential. New environments often cause dogs to lose any housebreaking they once had (even if they move to a different home with the same family). Sometimes, it’s only for a short stint before they get back to their normal behavior, but you may have to potty train them again. If you have a puppy, consider taking them to a doggie training class. The trainers can usually tailor their strategies to your dog’s unique breed and personality, and it’s a good chance for your pup to socialize with other dogs.
Dog-Proof Your Home
You can also make it more difficult for your dog to make a mess when they’re by themselves. Not only will dog-proofing help avoid messes, but it will also keep your dog safe. Be sure to keep all electrical cords and choking hazards off of the floor and other places your dog could get to. Store all foods up high or in the pantry, and keep all cleaning chemicals and medicines out of reach. Other ways to dog-proof your home include installing baby gates on your stairs, closing the doors to rooms you don’t want them to be in, and keeping dirty laundry off the floor.
Messes will happen from time to time; that’s just a part of owning a dog. But you can take steps to prevent them and make them occur less often. Providing ways for your dogs to burn their energy and exercise their minds will help them fight off boredom. Ensuring that they have proper training and dog-proofing your home will help you avoid messes and keep your dog safe from harm while you’re gone.
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Update: February 12, 2020 - New Article
We just published an updated, comprehensive guide on ways to keep your dog entertained when home alone on our sister site, Your Dog Advisor. It is completely free and you can find it here: https://yourdogadvisor.com/dog-home-alone/