But many don’t realise that changing routines can create similar anxieties in dogs, manifesting in undesirable behaviours including separation anxiety, barking, nervousness, jumping or pulling.
Record levels of dog purchases during lockdown have seen an exponential increase in behavioural issues and requests for help, report A&T Trained Dogs, the biggest combined dog training, doggy day-care, and luxury dog hotel in the UK, based in South Lancaster.
Unaddressed, and now exacerbated by the mass return to school, college and office, issues can escalate into destructive chewing, aggression, guarding, and even biting. Without remedial help, many dogs face being dumped on overstretched rescue centres or put down.
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With purpose-built facilities and a highly skilled team led by dog behaviour experts with over 30 years’ expertise worldwide, A&T’s Heronswood Canine Retreat, near Ashton Hall, provides behavioural therapy, socialisation, and training as well as perfectly pawsome 10,000 square foot doggy day-care, luxury boarding and five-star grooming services. They also deliver the facility to match potential new owners with A&T Trained Dogs’ own responsibly-bred, certified and highly trained dogs.
Owner Tarik Jayousi, who opened the facility in 2020, said: “Dogs previously secure in 24/7 companionship and attention can be deeply unsettled by owners returning to work. With socialisation and training classes on hold during lockdown, undesirable habits can easily become established. Without guidance and boundaries, these can soon escalate, creating an unhappy, stressed dog and family, but most are easily reversible, with the right support.”
Thanks to Heronswood’s extensive state-of-the-art £4 million bespoke building programme, highly trained and dedicated staff, and apprentice training programmes, the centre has brought significant investment and job opportunities to the area.
Facilities include doggy day-care, grooming, training and transport and a luxury temperature-controlled dog hotel, including separate blocks for nervous or aggressive dogs, and ‘golden oldies’, who prefer to spend more time sleeping.
The extensive and secure indoor and outdoor play and exercise areas, are accessible by all dogs in the day care facilities, for each to decide which environment they wish to be in.
Tarik said: “Our skills have never been so in-demand as this year, but that’s also positive: asking for help is no admission of failure, it’s responsible dog ownership. It’s a daily privilege to meet new friends, welcome back old friends, or restore a balanced, positive relationship between dog and owner.”