If the world seems uncertain these days and you find yourself looking for some reassurance, your family pet is probably coming to the rescue with unconditional love and support! As a pet owner, do you ever wonder what’s going on between those fluffy ears these days? Can they be thinking……..What are they doing home all day? Another walk? Why so many hugs? Can I hide under the bed? 🐶 🐱
For many of us that are working from home, our pets have been right by our side. They faithfully keep the spot under our desk warm and jump on our lap just in time for our zoom meetings. Some of us have been enduring our quarantine by walking our dogs, possibly even over-walking them, and we are realizing that they are playing an important role these days. Perhaps we can adjust to our new found changes a lot easier with a little help from our fury friends.
Pets have a positive impact. It’s a fact……pets help humans feel better and lower anxiety in times of stress. Scientists have linked the release of oxytocin (love hormone) to human interactions with animals. During the practice of social distancing, simple acts like petting and hugging can comfort us humans. If you are in quarantine alone, then their companionship can provide a life line against feeling isolated.
Staying active. The gyms are closed but your dog still needs a walk! Think of your dog as your new personal trainer/workout buddy. Getting outside for a walk is good for you and your four-legged friend, as long as you remember to stay the recommended six feet away from others and wear a mask.
Co-workers with tails. Our pets can create an important sense of companionship and PURPOSE, helping us feel less isolated as we adapt to a new remote working lifestyle. They require a routine and that can be helpful for those not accustomed to working from home. Having a pet helps you stick to your schedule of implementing walks and feedings as you navigate through this new regimen.
Tips for quarantine life. Stock up on necessities, like pet food and any medications that will last for two to three weeks. Consider donating to a local pet shelter that may be in need, if you buy a little extra. If you need to take them to the vet, call ahead to make sure they’re open and don’t forget to ask if they have special safety procedures in place. Like you, your pets may need a little extra mental stimulation so do not forget the toys.
Helping pets in need. Sometimes, a pet just doesn’t fit into a busy lifestyle. With much of the workforce now working from home, people who were unable to have pets are now freed up to do so, at least temporarily. If you are considering adopting a pet or providing a foster home while a pet waits for its forever home, NOW is a great time to help. Shelters have had to quickly find fosters in order for volunteers to safely shelter in place. Some shelters around the country have been successful but others still need help.
Preparing your home. It’s a good idea to make a list of items to prepare for a foster or newly adopted critter. Think about what you can do to make them feel at home. We have some good ideas that will keep you and your new fur baby organized in style. If you have the space for a “cabinet drawer re-do”, this custom feeding station has built in bowls and treat storage keeping chow time clean, organized and kick proof in a kitchen with a lot of traffic.
A quick option is to buy something off of the shelf. Accidents happen, so check out this easy to clean vinyl placemat that is stain- and water-resistant and has a non-skid coating on the other side. This one has a stylish leather like texture and comes in three colors. A raised food and water bowl can is helpful for taller pets.
Ziva and Willow have graciously agreed to model their tips: Since you need plenty of toys, collect them in a cute basket that is style worthy of being a part of the daily decor. There are tons of nice pet storage options out there. No chewing the storage basket please! Pets need somewhere cozy and comfortable to sleep—it doesn’t need to be fancy, a washable bed that is semi-soft can be a perfect resting spot. Orthopedic and memory foam pet bed options are good choices for dogs that need a little more support. They come in all sizes, so buy one that is the right size for your pet.
A designated area for all things for pets: If you don’t have a lot of space, this can easily be a shelf in the pantry. Include a dog or cat brush, shampoo, nail clippers, leash, meds and a lint brush (for you). Some pets come with more manners than others, so a supply of training treats will come in handy and be much appreciated. A small easy-to-grab hand-held pet vac with a lot of power will keep dog and cat hair under control. Sometimes new situations lead to accidents, so have a good enzyme cleaner and towels for any possible “situations.” For a quick pet “remodel” remedy: A baby gate will help contain them in a section of your home until they get used to their new surroundings. All of these items can be purchased online and some pet stores have remained open with social distancing procedures in practice.
Things to be aware of. Cats love houseplants so they need to be positioned out of reach. Keep toilet lids closed (also good training exercise for some humans). Cover trash cans to keep out curious snouts and beware of any small or sharp objects that may look delicious to our new roommates. Make sure there are no escape opportunities in the yard.
Fostering comes with one big hazard……. you might just fall in love. ❣️ I must confess to being a “foster failure” because it took me 20 minutes to realize I couldn’t possibly give Gunner back. We’ll wrap this post up with a look at our Terracotta pets, now turned co-workers. Hugs and thanks to all of them for teaching us what we need to know about opening our hearts and our homes.