The health benefits of having a pet have been well documented. Pets can reduce loneliness and anxiety, provide daily structure, and improve your mood. During these tense times when many people are self-isolating or in lockdown situations, a pet can be a literal lifesaver.
Walking the dog has been a popular diversion for many during the coronavirus quarantine according to ABC. Animal shelters around the country have seen a soaring demand for pets to provide both companionship and comfort.
“There is now a huge interest in fostering dogs and cats,” said Tracy Elliott, president of the Chicago Anti-Cruelty Society. “We have hundreds and hundreds of people waiting.”
Elliott says that animals fulfill basic human needs amplified by social distancing.
“Animals force us into a routine,” she says, particularly for those not accustomed to working from home. They also provide us with unconditional love, she adds.
Many folks may be worried that pets can be a risk at this time, but, according to ABC, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assures us: “At this time, there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 or that they may be a source of infection in the United States.”
Animal behaviorists caution that it’s important to keep your pets on schedule when the whole family is at home. Caroline Wilkinson, an animal trainer in England, tells The Guardian
that she recommends keeping their mealtimes and bedtimes consistent and scheduling a “rest period” from the more than normal daily activity.
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