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How To Care For Shelter Pets’ Mental Health

Caring for pets’ mental health and emotional well-being is an essential aspect of shelter management. Just like humans, pets require strategies that will help them improve their overall well-being.

In addition, by minimizing stress, providing enrichment, offering social connections, and tailoring care to individual needs, we can create a nurturing environment that supports their overall well-being.

In this blog post, we’ll explore various methods to care for shelter pets’ mental health, including quiet hours, enrichment activities, behavior-medical treatment programs, and more.

Quiet hours to keep them away from stress

Implementing a daily quiet hour can greatly benefit shelter dogs who may be stressed by the constant activity in their environment.

Also, the lights are dimmed, blinds are shut, and staff and volunteer entry into the kennel area is limited during this hour. This tranquil period allows dogs to rest and recharge, helping them present their best selves when potential adopters visit.

Enrichment activities for pets’ mental health improvement

Regular enrichment activities play a vital role in promoting the mental stimulation of shelter pets. Enrichment can vary based on species and individual needs.

For dogs, shaping new behaviors through training provides a valuable learning outlet. Moreover, daily walks, off-leash playtime, and the introduction of outdoor agility courses offer mental and physical engagement.

Most importantly, food-based enrichment, such as hiding kibble in objects for dogs to search and discover, adds an element of excitement to their day.

Small mammals like rabbits benefit from rotational vegetables in their meals and opportunities to explore larger spaces.

Social connections and bonding

Fostering social connections is crucial for the well-being of shelter cats. Housing them in colony rooms allows for social bonding with other cats.

At the same time, providing toys and play therapy activities, along with access to designated playrooms, helps stimulate their instincts. 

Behavior-medical treatment program

 A behavior-medical treatment program will help address specific behavioral challenges observed in shelter environments.

On the other hand, collaboration between veterinarians and behavior teams enables the use of medications such as Trazodone, Gabapentin, and Fluoxetine, supplemented by behavioral support. 

This approach helps animals cope with fear, separation anxiety, overgrooming, repetitive behaviors, and excessive energy.

Adopters are provided with a 2-week supply of any necessary medications and encouraged to follow up with their veterinarian post-adoption.

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Our wide selection of toys is designed to engage and stimulate your pet friend, providing them with hours of entertainment and mental enrichment. Shop Now at Doobert to boost your pets’ mental health and help shelters! Every 5% of your purchase goes to supporting animal organizations.

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