Can Dogs Get Homesick? 5 Remedies

Whether or not dogs are capable of feeling homesick is an open question. Yes, without a doubt. The answer is yes if you have ever house-sat for a friend or taken in their dog while they were gone.

Dogs are highly empathetic and bonded to their homes and families. When they are away from their family, they will begin to exhibit symptoms of anxiety and despair.

What Are the Signs Your Dog is Homesick?

Take your dog to a doggy day spa while you’re away so she may socialize with other dogs and receive pampering from the staff.

There’s a catch, though: They’re complete strangers! What happened to my mother? Where is my home? It’s not there. This is not right!

can dogs get homesick

If your dog has never been to a new location before, they will be nervous and freaked out. There are many ways to tell if your dog is homesick: they may cower, refuse food or bathroom breaks, sigh, whine or refuse to play. This may carry on for days. I understand the pain, but your dog will be OK once they calm down on their own. You can’t rush that process.

The History of Dogs and Homesickness

When a dog is separated from its family or owner, he or she will get depressed. The wolf pack mentality is to blame. The dog’s pack consists of the people who take care of and feed them. When a dog is separated from the rest of the pack or is in a new environment, he or she is likely to become anxious and homesick.

The Science Behind Homesick Dogs

Depressive, anxious, and sorrowful behaviors appear in dogs when they are separated from their group or family. Therapy dogs are often employed to help college freshmen, children in the hospital, or others who are away from home feel less homesick. There is no need for research to inform those of us who love dogs or have ever loved a dog that their power to liven up us as individuals is limitless.

Training Your Pup to Cope with Homesickness

When you travel, it’s sometimes necessary to leave your dog with family, friends, or a kennel. Here are a few ideas to help them get through this difficult time.

When you drop off your dog, don’t make a big deal out of it; just tell them to be good and that you’ll be back shortly. Keep your cool and resist the urge to get worked up. More worried your dog will be when you depart if you prolong the farewell.

Also, bring some of your dog’s personal “things” with you, such as their bed, favorite toys, snacks, and anything else that makes your dog feel like they’re home. There are plenty of canine hotels that allow you to check in on your dog via the internet and communicate with them via a microphone, in case he’s staying there while you’re away.

Whether your dog is staying with a family member or a friend, it’s always a good idea to contact and check in. The smell of mom or dad will instantly put your baby at ease, and this is another approach to help reduce their nervousness before going to sleep.

Can dogs get homesick?

Every time I visit my mother’s place, my dog behaves in this manner. As a result, I’ve given up taking her because she’d refuse to eat or drink anything for three or more days at a time. I believe people may experience homesickness or anxiety upon arriving in a new location.

It is possible for dogs to become homesick. Before he died, my beagle spent a week with me at my father’s house while my mother and stepfather were away on their honeymoon, and he didn’t seem quite the same. However, the dog’s temperament can affect how much he enjoys the location.

What Causes Homesickness?

When you’re away from home, almost everyone misses something. However, certain persons are more likely to suffer from acute homelessness than others. Homecoming blues can be brought on by a number of factors:

A change in routine. Moving away from home disrupts your daily habits and lifestyle, which can cause stress and worry. Your old routines and habits aren’t reliable sources of comfort when you’re in a new setting, especially if the culture is very different from what you’re accustomed to.

There is a cultural divide. Researchers discovered that the more cultural and value differences there are, the more difficult it is to adjust, and the more homesickness there is. The lack of interest in your new surroundings can lead to apathy. ‌

can dogs get homesick

A hard time adjusting. Adapting to a new setting can be difficult for some people. A study of newly enlisted soldiers found that those who were homesick also exhibited more restrictive behavior. They clung to their old ways and steered clear of situations that forced them to grow and change.

A sense of alienation or disconnection. In a survey of foreign nationals residing in the Netherlands, those aged 30 to 39 who had been here for six to eight years were more likely to suffer from homesickness than those who had only been here for a few months. Foreigners may have felt like outsiders despite the familiar surroundings, which may have contributed to their heightened homesickness after a few years. Some of them may also be unsure of their own and their children’s place in this community. In which country do they have a right to live now?

Effects of Homesickness

Depression. Major depressive disorder (MDD), often known as depression, is a condition that causes a person to experience a persistent melancholy and lack of pleasure. Symptoms like frequent sobbing, sleep disturbances, difficulties concentrating, and a desire to retreat from social interactions are all signs of homesickness, according to medical experts. The feeling of longing for one’s home might even lead to depression in certain people.

Grief. Migration workers and other immigrants may have left their homes for a better career or income, but they nevertheless miss the familiar comforts and sense of belonging they formerly had.

Reduces output. Having a hard time focusing on work or school while you’re in a strange place can be a sign of anxiety or depression. Having difficulty concentrating on tasks that are unrelated to home might also be a sign of intense homesickness.

Effects on the body. Symptoms of homesickness, such as a lack of appetite, stomach troubles, insomnia, headaches, and exhaustion, can also manifest in the physical realm.

How to Deal with Homesickness

This is quite normal. Having homesickness and a desire to return to familiar surroundings when you are away from home is a perfectly normal reaction. It’s a sign that your relationships with the people you care about are strong. The transition to your new environment will take some time.

Take classes or go to events. There are some companies and universities that organize events for international employees or students, and this can help you learn more about your new city and meet new people.

Be a part of something. Playing sports and exercising might help you forget about your feelings of homesickness and improve your outlook on life. Team sports can also help you form new friendships and gain support from others in your community.

Be on the lookout for an alternative “preferred” location. Coffee shops, library tables, or even a shade tree can all qualify as “the perfect place to work.” It creates a sense of familiarity, which may help you feel more at ease.

Befriend the people who live there. If you’re moving to a new country from a place where the culture is significantly different, it may be beneficial to get to know some of the residents. A study of African students in the United States indicated that those who interacted with American pupils had an easier difficulty adjusting to their new environment.

I’d want to hear from you. Keep in touch with loved ones back home with letters, emails, phone calls, and text messages on a regular basis. There was less homesickness among expatriates living and working in London, England, who maintained regular contact with friends and family back home. Daily phone calls, on the other hand, may exacerbate your homesickness. Instead of calling every day, consider calling once or twice a week.

A notebook of gratitude. When you’re missing home, writing in your journal might be therapeutic. If you can, make it a habit to write down three things you’re thankful for and three things you’re excited about each night before you go to bed.

Signs of Homesickness

A rehomed dog may appear frightened or lazy to his new owner at first. Dogs’ adjustment periods can range from weeks to months, depending on the dog’s temperament and how quickly it adapts to its new environment. If he’s having a difficult time adapting to his new surroundings, he may appear withdrawn. A little playing with him might not pique his interest. He may also appear to be fidgety and antsy. It is not uncommon for rehomed dogs to be too affectionate with their new owners.

Why Does My Dog Get Homesick?

The simple conclusion is that dogs get homesick when they are away from their owners and a designated location because they miss the comfort and safety that may be provided.

In the absence of you, your dog is deprived of the nourishment, exercise, comfort and love they need to thrive.

Your dog may be confused if you take them to a new location while they are still with you. Smells and routines that people are accustomed to are not available to them.

can dogs get homesick

What to Do to Ease Homesickness in Dogs

Crate train your dog.

Because they believe it’s cruel or because their dog prefers to sleep in their bed, some dog owners refuse to crate train their pets. It’s the owner who wants the dog to lie on the bed, not the other way around. In actuality, dogs will sleep anyplace they feel safe. In order to prevent your dog from experiencing anxiety when sleeping or eating in his or her crate, you should begin this process as soon as possible.

What’s more, you know? As long as the crate is present, a dog who has been trained to use a crate can be at ease almost anyplace. Taking your dog’s kennel on vacation reduces the likelihood that he or she will become homesick.

Give him something that smells like you.

Give him something that smells like you if you’re scared he’ll start crying, barking, or whining when you leave the room. This reassures your dog that you will return and gives him a comforting familiar object. When staying in a completely unfamiliar location, like a hotel room with a variety of other odors, this is very crucial.

Have plenty of chew toys.

Dogs might become frightened or homesick while traveling, so it’s crucial that they have a safe area to vent their feelings. If she’s going to be alone for long periods of time, make sure she has plenty of her favorite chew toys to keep her occupied. Because she’s used to having toys about when she’s at home, this also helps create a familiar environment.

Practice being apart.

You can’t just take a trip and expect your dog to accept the fact that he will be separated from one or more of his human partners as something regular. Before embarking on a long journey away from home, it’s critical to get some practice in with your dog. The less anxious and homesick your dog becomes while traveling, the easier it will be for you to return home after a brief absence. Crate training can be be done at this time.

Stay active.

Keeping your dog occupied is a definite method to keep her from becoming homesick. Make sure she doesn’t spend her entire trip cooped up in a hotel room; instead, take her on daily excursions to get her used to the idea of traveling. If your dog has a lot of pent-up energy, be sure to keep up with normal routines like feeding times.

Seeing a vet is a good idea if your dog becomes depressed or anxious while you’re away from home. If your dog is homesick while you’re away, they may be able to give medication to help alleviate the symptoms of motion sickness and travel anxiety.


When a dog begins to show signs of homesickness, many dog owners become terrified. However, there is no need to be alarmed, as homesickness is a treatable illness. A sudden change in a dog’s daily routine is bound to create some anxiety. Your dog’s reaction to the new environment will depend on how you handle it. If you plan on taking your dog on a trip, be careful to hire a sitter who will get along well with your pet. If you’re traveling with a dog, book a hotel with enough of square footage so your pet has plenty of area to stretch his or her legs.

Princy Hoang

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