Tips for Surviving the Autumn Time Change with Your Dog

The beginning and end of daylight savings time can be surprisingly challenging for dogs. Just like for people, the time change can disrupt daily habits and sleep cycles.

Fall Back -- Meals Are An Hour Late!!!

This is the #1 issue I hear from dog guardians. Dogs can be creatures of habit, and are likely to complain when they're hungry!

  • Consider giving meals early and slowly working back to normal meal time over the course of a couple of weeks.

  • Give your dog lunch to ease the transition.

  • Give your dog a chewy or food toy an hour or 2 before normal mealtime.

Fall Back -- Why Are You Still in Bed?

While we may enjoy that extra hour in bed, your dog might still wake up at their usual time. Some dogs are more willing to sleep in, while others might insist you get up.

  • Have patience as your dog gets used to the time change.

  • Give your dog an evening snack to help tide over their hunger in the morning.

  • You may have to get up early for potty breaks temporarily.

  • Avoid giving food too early in the morning to decrease the chances that your dog will come to expect a meal at that time on a regular basis.

Housetraining Issues May Arise

Your dog's bodily functions have not changed, even though the clocks have!

  • Be ready if your dog needs a potty break at an unusual time.

  • Offer extra walks and potty breaks.

  • Never punish your dog for accidents.

In addition to the above, be aware that the time change can be stressful and disruptive. Be patient, offer comfort if your dog is anxious, and you and your dog will adjust with time.

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