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If you are left alone with nothing to do, it can really get to you. It isn’t very surprising then that cats or dogs end up doing things that they would rather not when they are left to their own devices. Some pets will meow or bark without pausing, while others will defecate or urinate in inappropriate locations, scratch, chew or tear things, or even mutilate themselves by neurotically licking, biting or scratching too much. Before you feel all guilty and decide to give up our pet, here are a few things you can do to relieve your pets of their daily loneliness and boredom.
- Stay active – Even dogs and cats that are shy respond really well to social activities. Make sure that your pet exercises daily and gets to relax together with you. If you walk your dog for 15 minutes before you leave for work in the morning, it would really help him to release all his pent up energy and will hold him till you get back home in the evening. It is not very different for cats. If you give them some playtime with feather toys or lasers before you head out the door, it will stimulate their body and mind.
- Hire a sitter – If your day is too hectic for you to spend time playing or walking your pet, or if your pet is excessively energetic, hire a pet sitter or a dog walker to come in and spend time with him. Dog care centers are an excellent alternative as well considering the fact that they are a growing trade. They provide daily activities and are a great opportunity for your dog to socialize with other dogs. Just like you would for your child, make sure you do your research and ask questions before you enroll your dog in one of those programs.
- Toy around – The pet industry is fast recognizing the need for keeping dogs and cats mentally stimulated. There are many puzzle toys that release treats at regular intervals or in response to a constructive activity. It is a great way to keep your pet from thinking about destructive matters. You can stuff plastic toys with food products such as kibble or treats that are meat flavored so that they keep at the game till they reach the goal. Cats also love finding places they can climb to and hide in to exercise their claws. A scratching post or a cat tower can provide the critical relief that your cat needs. It will take you a few tries to find the perfect material, but it is totally worth it, for the sanity and mental health of both you and your cat.