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    Tips for Helping Your Pet Avoid the Back-to-School Blues

    Parents aren’t the only ones who suffer from empty nest syndrome when the kids go back to school; it can have an impact on the family pets too! From a lethargic mood to destructive behavior, there are many signs your pet may be missing their best human friend more than usual. Here are some tips to help you prepare your pets beforehand and help them cope with this anxious time of year.

    It’s a Family Matter

    This can be a great chance for your kids to take more responsibility for the care of their pets. Let your kids know that their dog or cat will be missing them while they’re gone all day, and discuss what they can do to help their pets through it.

    Eat It to Beat It

    To help balance out the boredom of an empty house, have your kids create interactive puzzle feeders or make a scavenger hunt by dividing up your pet’s daily amount of food into small bowls and hiding them around the house. Using a food like Beneful®, which has real beef or chicken as the #1 ingredient, will help engage their senses and make the scavenger hunt more rewarding.

    More Than Just Sad, It’s Separation Anxiety

    If your pet exhibits true separation anxiety, for example, he goes crazy when he sees your kids put on their backpacks to leave for school, or is destructive when everyone is gone, you'll have to do some gentle training to ease his stress. When you leave, keep goodbyes short and upbeat, or eliminate them completely.

    Zzzz You Later

    Another great way to help take the edge off your pet’s anxiety is to tucker them out before you and the kids leave for the day. Find 20-30 minutes in the morning for some tiring playtime or take your dog on a vigorous walk. With some strenuous exercise early in the day, your cat or dog is more likely to be tired and spend the day sleeping — not stressing.

    Remember, your pets can get nervous, upset, anxious or lonely just like people, only they don't have the benefit of knowing that you’ll be back when you leave. It's up to you and your kids to make your pets feel secure in ways they understand.

    Article provided by PURINA®

    Dollar General is not responsible for the content above and disclaims all liability therefrom. Dollar General does not sponsor, recommend or endorse any third party, product, service, or information provided on this site. All content provided herein is for educational purposes only. It is provided “as is” and as such, the accuracy of same is not warranted in any way. Such content is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the diagnosis, treatment and advice of a veterinarian. Such content does not cover all possible side effects of any new or different dietary program or skin/coat program for your pet. Consult your veterinarian for guidance before changing or undertaking a new diet or grooming plan.

    If your pet has dietary restrictions and/or allergies, always read the ingredient list carefully for all food or grooming products prior to using. Neither Triad Digital Media, LLC nor Dollar General make any representations as to the accuracy or efficacy of the information provided nor do they assume any responsibility for errors, omissions or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein. Special written permission is required to reproduce in any manner, in whole or in part.

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