How to Keep Your Dog from Feeling Lonely

Dogs can take loneliness worse than you might imagine. Therefore, whenever your pet shows any signs of discomfort you should do something about it. Aggression, nervousness, barking, and howling when their owner is gone indicate that something isn't right. 
How to Keep Your Dog from Feeling Lonely

Last update: 22 September, 2018

Leaving your dog home alone isn’t just a frightening experience for the dog, but the owner as well. Therefore, if this happens to you and your dog, then you should read these tips to help your dog deal with separation, and avoid finding a disaster as soon as you arrive home.

Loneliness and pets

Like humans, animals can feel lonely if they spend a certain amount of time alone. This is a very common problem today due to the busy lifestyles people live.

Undoubtley dogs won’t like spending several hours a day in complete solitude. Not spending time with their owners can cause depression. But don’t worry, there are simple, creative solutions to this problem. 

As a responsible pet owner, you must be aware of any signs that show problems in your dog’s mental health. Like humans, when dogs feel lonely they like to draw attention when you come home to tell you that there’s a problem that needs to be attended to.

A puppy urinating on the floor

You shouldn’t get angry if the dog urinates or has made a mess of the house upon your arrival home. That’s his way of getting your attention, but it’s easy to control these behaviors. 

Separation anxiety

Before reading the tips below, you have to recognize the symptoms your pet might show. Dogs show anxiety in several ways that can be easily identified.

One of the main symptoms of this disorder is constant barking or howling when you’re gone. The animal will feel very aggressive or nervous. In other words, he will tell you not to leave the home.

dog alone

Other behaviors such as licking objects like furniture, lack of appetite, remaining still, or demonstrating fear are clear signs of discomfort. No doubt your log loves you a lot, but that’s no reason to give in to this behavior. You should resolve it as quickly as possible.

However, keep in mind that if he keeps repeating those behaviors, you should seek advice from a veterinarian

Advice for leaving your dog alone

  • One of the best techniques to prevent your dog from feeling lonely is by leaving him a couple toys. It’s a really good idea but sooner or later he’ll end up getting bored with that toy, so should give him a different toy every day. 
  • Feeding him before leaving is also a very good idea. Your pet’s belly will be full all day and he’ll feel satisfied. If you think it won’t be enough for your dog, you can hide some snacks and rewards around the house to entertain him and alleviate his anxiety. 
  • Take him for a walk before you leave. Dogs love going out for walks, especially long ones, so he can get some exercise and play fetch for a bit. When you do that, you’ll drain your pet’s energy.
  • If you don’t like to leave him alone, then you should get another pet. Your dog will love the idea of having someone to play with while you’re gone. Due to dogs being sociable creatures, having a friend nearby will calm them down and they’ll feel more comfortable. 
Two dogs spending time with each other

What not to do when leaving your dog alone

  • Don’t lock him up. Being in one room with no freedom is harmful to his mental health. He’ll think he’s being punished for bad behavior.
  • Avoid overindulging him. This will only make him more dependent on you, and the separation will be more problematic. Teach him to be independent, and he’ll be fine without you for a good amount of time.
  • Avoid being dramatic. It’s understandable that he is part of the family, but don’t baby him too much, just like we mentioned earlier. The best thing to do is to treat him with affection, without being too distant or exaggerated about it. For example, when you arrive, greet him, but don’t overwhelm him with affection.


This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.