While it might be hard to find “good” in the on-going need for social distancing and how the new coronavirus has impacted lives, it should be noted that animal shelters and rescues across the country have actually seen a huge increase in the number of adoptions and in people interested in fostering pets, says Thomas F. Dock, Director of Communications/Public Information Office at Noah’s Animal Hospitals.
When you stop and think about it, this makes perfect sense, what could be better than staying at home and opening your home to a furry friend in need? People are enjoying the companionship of their new pets and the simple act of adoption/fostering provides a sense of relief from the constant barrage of bad news.
It is amazing that people are reaching out to help animals, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, know your breed. Make sure your lifestyle and the needs of the pet you are adopting are compatible. Many breeds, like Huskies and Dalmatians, are high energy dogs that need to release that energy in some way. Others, like German Shepherd Dogs, are looking for a job to do.
Next, be prepared for some financial expenditures. While many adopted pets from shelters and rescues have most or all of the preventive care services already done, you will need to consider the costs of food, treats, bedding, toys, and on-going preventive care, like parasite prevention and updating vaccinations.
If your pup is one that needs grooming, make sure that’s also in your budget for every 4-6 weeks.
At some point, your kids will go back to school and you may need to go back to work. How will that impact your new friend, who is likely happy that you are always at home? Try letting your furry friend spend a little time alone in their crate with you out of sight. In some cases, you might need to start slow and only stay away for 15-20 minutes. You can always build from there!
Whenever you have questions, don’t forget that your veterinarian and his/her team is happy to help. If you are having trouble getting into the office, ask about the options for telemedicine or doing a video conference with your veterinarian. There are many apps available to help facilitate this. Look for trustworthy websites, like PetPalsTV.com, where you can learn about your pet’s needs or ask questions.