Have you ever wondered what your dog gets up to when they’re home alone?

Although most dog owners try to avoid leaving their pets on their own for extended period of times, occasionally this can’t be helped and your dog might have to brave being home alone.

What do they get up to in this time? Why have your favourite shoes been chewed?

We had so many questions we had to see what dogs get up to when left by themselves, so we set up a camera to record Bertie the 9 month miniature schnauzer while this owner nipped out to the shop.

Here’s what Matt our vet had to say about Bertie…

The lack of being destructive indicates that the anxiety is not that bad and I see that after a bit of a snooze in the sun I see he’s now playing with a ball. It’s a really good idea to leave objects around to play with when they get bored.
^Matt the Vet
After his snooze in the sun he might have got a bit hot (greenhouse effect) and is now busy exploring the room again. Leaving an article of clothing as a comfort blanket is a nice idea.
^Matt the Vet
Oh dear, having said he wasn’t being destructive I see he’s decided to do a bit of book work and is chewing a book and looks like he might be barking. Something must have disturbed him and maybe he thinks that his owners are coming back.
^Matt the Vet
Back to sleep in the sun. Maybe there was a noise outside disturbing him. This is why leaving the radio on acting as background noise is a way of covering disturbances that might come from the outside.
^Matt the Vet
Here’s another idea to keep them busy while you’re out. If you have a hard floor like this one try throwing a small handful of biscuits on the kitchen floor just before you go out. This keeps them busy looking for the biscuits but can be a bit messy underfoot.
^Matt the Vet
Another idea is that you can get balls in which you can hide dog biscuits. When they play with the ball occasionally a biscuit falls out. This is good mental stimulation.
^Matt the Vet
Earlier on we saw Bertie eating dad’s favourite book. He doesn’t really know what he’s doing and it’s important that you don’t tell him off when you get back because he won’t associate what he did earlier when you tell him off when you return.
^Matt the Vet
If you have toys like chews or kongs, put them away when you’re at home and only get them out for your dog to play with when you’re out. That way they are a novel item for when they’re on their own.
^Matt the Vet
I see Bertie is up and about again, often going to the door where the catflap is. Maybe he’s sticking his head out to see what’s going on outside. These are all symptoms that he is bored and often getting disturbed by noises from outside. Leaving the radio on will cut down on outside stimulation.
^Matt the Vet
This is so interesting. It just shows that our pets have a secret life of their own when we’re out. It is really important to take what we’ve learnt here home and ensure that when you leave your pet at home alone you provide for their psychological and physical needs.
^Matt the Vet
You could see how excited Bertie was to see his dad but his dad did really well not making too much of a fuss of him on his return. This will help decrease Bertie’s expectation whilst his owners aren’t there.
^Matt the Vet

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