Some believe the pandemic is the best thing to happen to our pets since catnip and rope toys. I hear from family and friends—as well as those on FaceBook—how happy their cats and dogs are since everyone is staying home. For cats it’s like the most comforting thing that could happen. For dogs, they are so happy they can’t decide which family member to engage with at any given moment.
Even those of us who write or otherwise work at home or who are retired, are seeing a difference in our pets because we’re reacting differently to what’s going on. We are taking better care of ourselves—staying home more, maybe resting in front of the TV while watching breaking news coverage of world and local events, and we’re not complicating our pets’ life by inviting people in. That means we’re more available to our pets, and cats and dogs will totally take advantage of that availability—that lap, that free hand… Lily and Sophie have even had a few quarrels over me. They don’t particularly want to be close to each other, but they both want to be close to me. Niiiiiice.
Let’s hear it for this nation’s pets. They’re certainly cheeringly happy these days. When it’s time for America to go back to work and play and school, can you just imagine the letdown for Scruffy and Fluffy? Maybe we should start now enriching their lives in ways that will serve them and sooth them when we are able to leave the house again.
For cats that might be extra water fountains, stairs to a runway along the walls of your living room, a new, more elaborate cat tree and more of their favorite toys (Amazon remains open, you know). Oh, and the cats will love the boxes that everything comes in. Safety alert! If you give your cat a delivery box, set it outside or in the garage for 24-48 hours before allowing them to play in it. Just to be on the safe side. I’d also wash the box down as thoroughly as possible with soap and water.
For Dogs, more rope toys, chew toys, a new bed, perhaps, and how about installing a doggie door so he can go in or out when he wants?