Saturday, 28 December 2013

Dogs Suffer During Home Remodelling

If home renovation is hard on human beings, think how much harder it is on dogs. At least humans can understand what is happening and why. All the dog knows is that everything in the home is disrupted and there is no idea of when it will all end. Dog stress during home renovation is a serious matter and should not be ignored. It can leave lasting scars on a dog’s psyche. A loved dog gives more to the family that he takes, so when a home renovation is going on, it is only fair that this is the time when the family give to him. Here are a few things that can be done to reduce the stress on a pet dog during a remodel
  • Keep the dog away from the part of the house where work is going on. A curious dog could get hurt by going too near a work area. A friendly dog is a distraction to the workmen who may feel compelled to keep an eye on him while their work suffers. And the mass of movement and noise can confuse and upset a normally quiet dog and make him aggressive. The more time at least one member of the family spends with him, the better he will feel.
  • Keeping the dog confined to a small part of the house while the work is in progress can be a strain on him. This can be mitigated by spending as much time as possible with him and taking him out for walks frequently and playing with him.
  • Dogs are curious by nature and when it comes to their homes, this trait is especially strong. They want to go and investigate everything that is happening in the home, even if they don’t understand the what and the why. The problem is that nails, splinters, open wiring and other construction hazards pose a special danger to dogs. The best way to deal with this is to wait till the work has finished for the day, check out a part of the house to ensure that it is safe for the dog and then take him through it. Keep him on a short leash (literally) to ensure that he doesn’t stick his nose where it shouldn’t go.
  • Roof replacement is very stressful for a dog. They hear noise above them and see the sky where it wasn’t a few days before. It is common for dogs to look up and bark and howl when the roof is gone. All you can do is try to comfort him.
  • Falling shingles and other debris can be very dangerous for dogs that feel safe in their homes and are therefore off guard. Take the dog out of the house to a distance where he is safe and tell him look at the work going on. Once again, he will not understand what he is seeing, but at least he will feel that he is being allowed to see the action.
  • Since the dog will be confined to one room much of the time, make sure that water, snacks, favourite toys and the doggy bed are all placed in the room. Often keeping the TV or radio on to drown out at least part of the construction noise helps to keep dogs calm.
  • If none of these help and the dogs is getting more and more tense and upset, the only viable option is to board the dog at a kennel during the remodel. This can be a problem because many dogs do not take well to a change of environment and the company of strangers. But it is worth a try.
Dogs don’t like remodeling. When such a project is on, it is the responsibility of the owner and their family to comfort the dog as much as possible.

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