Tonawanda News

Features

June 30, 2014

CRITTER COMPANIONS: Bringing home work

(Continued)

Tonawanda News —

Now eight years later, Kayla says Abby will still peer her head out of the room when Kayla is leaving but she doesn’t get up and goes to her bed and lies down.

Kayla said the things to remember are no cuddly goodbyes; give the animal a task or a toy when you leave, and don’t throw a welcome-home party.

She said that by coddling them before you leave, it will most likely lead to more anxiety.

Giving them a feeder toy as you leave can serve two purposes.

“It also not only reinforces me leaving but keeps her busy for about the first 10 minutes when I am gone,” she said. “It is said that the first 10 minutes are the most stressful for your animal.”

Kayla has found that by calmly walking into your home, getting settled and then greeting your pet is the best protocol for separation anxiety.

Who knew the training principles for walruses, sea lions and dogs were so similar?

I did and I bet Critter Companion readers did too. See you next week at Mang Park.

Kenny Coogan has a B.S. in animal behavior and is a certified professional bird trainer through the International Avian Trainers Certification Board. Please email your questions to kenny.coogan@yahoo.com, or search for “Critter Companions by Kenny Coogan” on Facebook.

 

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