Do dogs get lonely?

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When you have to leave your dog behind while you work, run errands, or take a trip, it is never easy. Everyone adores their dogs and wants to take them everywhere. Even worse is when you close the door behind you and see those puppy-dog eyes. No matter what your dog does, it is almost always clear that they adore you and don’t want you to go.

But what takes place once we leave? Many people wonder if their dog ever feels lonely when they leave them alone during the day. Unfortunately, yes. Loneliness is one of the many emotions that dogs are capable of feeling.

However, there are some things you can do to help your dog feel less lonely while you’re away.


Although we are all sorry that we sometimes have to leave our dogs, they don’t understand why we have to do it every day, even if we will come back. Because of this, your dog may act in many ways that show loneliness while you’re away. This loneliness may persist even after you return home.

Look out for these habits if you’re concerned about your dog while you’re away. Installing a spy camera to keep an eye on your dog is a good idea, but is not the only way to keep your dog entertained.

Dogs’ personalities are as unique as those of humans. The reasons why they may feel lonely will depend on the circumstances. Even while it’s not always simple to detect how our dogs are feeling, there are several behaviors that your dog may be lonely:

They no longer play alone as much as they used to.

Your pet’s lack of desire to play as much as normal is another issue you might notice. However, there can be a few different reasons why they might skip playtime. You should check with your vet to ensure it’s not something more serious.

They might lick themselves more frequently.

Dogs who are lonely may lick or bite at their own fur more often, losing patches of fur as a result. This typical sign of boredom or anxiety in dogs sometimes appears as small circular sores.

They sleep more often

When dogs are lonely or depressed, like people, they start napping more. It’s a kind of escape. If your dog begins to sleep more than usual, this may be a sign that he is lonely or that there is a more serious medical condition. Talk with your vet to see what’s going on with your furry best friend.

They behave in a destructive way.

Another sign that your dog might be lonely is if he starts acting destructively around the house, trashing items, or chewing on furniture. When dogs are left alone daily, it may be a symptom of boredom or an attempt to attract their owner’s attention. After all, to a dog bad attention is better than none.


You might need to occasionally leave your dog alone due to unforeseen circumstances, work obligations, and busy schedules. There are a few methods we may use to make our furry friends feel better if we suspect they are going through times of loneliness.

Get a second dog

Of course, the best way to overcome loneliness is to have friends. Now, getting another dog is not the best course of action for every home. You should make sure that this is a wise choice. With proper thought, a well-chosen companion can be a great way to help your dog!

Human companionship

In case you cannot get another dog, it is okay. There are many other approaches to reducing loneliness. Many trips, errands, and activities may be made dog-friendly with some planning! If this is not an option, ask your friends or family members to check on the dog when you are not home.

The help of neighbors, dog walkers, and pet sitters can all be an option. You might even come across a dog lover who can’t wait to visit your pet and spoil it with love, care, and even a walk.

Of course, when you have free time, you can always go with your pet to the dog park, for a walk, or on a camping trip. In this way, you will make up for the time your furry friend spent alone.

Few more practical ways to help your dog feel less lonely

In case you are unable to get another dog, all your friends and relatives are busy, don’t worry!

Here are some additional ideas that might help you when leaving the dog home alone:

Provide your dog with a special area.

Where can dogs be kept while their owners are at work? A designated area in your home should contain your dog’s bed, a safe toy, food, and water. Using a pet fence can prevent your dog from wandering into your favorite slippers, which they like to gnaw on. Additionally, it’s a good idea to dog-proof the area to prevent damage, injury, or bad-for-them food consumption.

Offer entertainment.

The time you spend gone will pass quickly if you keep your pet occupied. You can give your dog different toys and treats. Give them a hollow toy that has peanut butter inside, if possible. You can freeze the peanut butter-filled toy for a cool treat as a challenge. An interactive puzzle that will keep older dogs interested for a while can be used as well.

To make the challenge more difficult, you can also hide those puzzle toys that are filled with food. By doing this, you can encourage your dog to associate leaving the house with something positive. However, only do this if your dog is not destructive because unsupervised pets can easily turn toys into a danger.

Provide them with a restroom.

Healthy adult dogs can typically last the full 8-hour day. However, for senior dogs, those with medical needs, and for days where you are away longer, you may need to set up a backup potty option for your pup. Such as pee pads or grass pads, which can serve as their dedicated bathroom area. A dog door that leads to the backyard is another option, as is employing a dog walker to take the dog for you.

Keep your blinds or curtains open.

Dogs love when the blinds or curtains are open as they feel less confined in the house. They enjoy observing what is going on in the outside world. Especially if it involves seeing you approach the door.

Test your dog’s reaction to the blinds being open while you are home to see how they react. Some dogs may become too excited or nervous by what they see outside (such as a squirrel or a neighboring cat). It might be best to open a different window, such as one that faces your backyard.


While yes, dogs can get lonely, there are options to keep your best friend comfortable while you are away. However, if your dog seems to be too destructive, you may need to talk with your vet about anxiety relief. 


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