One of the most common behaviour struggles noted in dogs is some form of destructive or noisy behaviour while the guardian is away from home.
Dogs have evolved over thousands of years to be in a partnership with humans. This means that they instinctively seek out the company of humans and form strong bonds with their guardians. So when a guardian leaves for an extended period, this can be a stressful event. This stress can be reduced by training your dog that being alone is actually a pleasant experience (see the Top Tip below!).
Depending on a dog’s age, they should not be left in isolation for too long; puppies should not exceed two hours of alone time and adults not more than six hours.
If you have a single dog household, it is imperative that you arrange for a friend, neighbour or dog-walker to break up the time when you have to be away, or you can consider a well run doggy daycare. In multi-dog households the dogs will provide each other with company, but this does not replace their time with you, so time spent away should be kept to a minimum where possible.
Top Tip: While you are PRESENT, teach your dog to chew his favorite toys and to extract food from puzzle feeders. Once some skills and value have developed, your dog will be able to engage in these appropriate activities in your absence. And this means they won’t be chewing the sprinklers or ripping up the couch!