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coping strategies

Research found that those for whom dog ownership was the least difficult were more likely to have many more strategies to reduce pet boredom, in particular spending time with their dog when at home and having an outdoor area the dog could go to whenever it wanted (including for toileting).

 

The coping strategies most likely to be utilised by dog owners were (in order of priority):

 

• Having access to an outdoor space whenever the dog wants it for toileting (65%)

• Spending as much time as possible with the dog when at home (57%)

• Regularly walking around the streets (47%)

• Having a secure outdoor area that the dog can go to whenever it wants (45%)

• Having lots of toys to occupy the dog when alone (34%)

• Training to avoid nuisance behaviour (34%)

• Leaving the radio or television on when the dog is alone (18%)

• Having someone call in and check on the dog during the day (11%)

• Arranging for the dog to visit family or friends when the house is going to be empty (11%)

 

The coping strategies most likely to be utilised by cat owners were (in order of priority):

 

• Train the cat to use a litter tray (76%)

• Provision of a scratching post to reduce nuisance behaviour (59%)

• Letting the cat outside regularly (59%)

• Spending as much time as possible with the cat when at home (57%)

• Having lots of toys to occupy the cat when alone (33%)

For both dog and cat owners, the cost of vet bills was overcome either by pet insurance or putting money aside each month.