Dogs adapt to new routine

A Salford psychology lecturer has urged dog owners to heed warnings that their pets may find the end of lockdown stressful.

Dogs in particular have relished the constant presence of their home-working owners and the unique attention they received during the lockdowns.

But for many, that is now ending.

Pyschology lecturer Dr Gregory Keenan said dogs could be distressed by the change of routine.

He said: “My guess is that they would not know what is happening but they would know that there is a change in the environment.

“There would be a change in their interaction with the owners.

“Dogs are very good at detecting emotions in humans. If humans show signals that they are upset or depressed the animals respond to that.”

An extract of the interview with Dr Keenan is below:

Animal rescue charity the RSPCA has issued guidelines advising dog owners of the steps they need to take to minimise the effect of post-lockdown on their pets

The guidelines say: “Dogs are social animals. Routine changes is something the pooch can adapt to.

“The owner must think ahead and make gradual changes to his dog routine.

“The canine must return to its pre-lockdown routine, gradually.  This prevents the symptoms of anxiety and frustration.”

For a summary of the symptoms of distress in dogs click  in the Piktochart below:


Dogs' distressed signals
Credit: Barbara Langley

The RSPCA’s tips to dog owners can be read in the Piktochart below:


Credit: Barbara Langley

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