Have you been feeling isolated, anxious, or depressed since COVID-19 hit the U.S. in early March? Is being homebound with your family ALL THE TIME making you crazy? If you are experiencing this, you are not alone! We can all relate to these feelings….men, women, children, and even dogs and cats.
Pets do have a spectrum of emotions just like humans. They experience fear, anger, and anxiety. Some dogs and cats even have OCD and PTSD issues. Our pets also pick up on our emotions so when we are upset, they sense it. Since we are at home so much these days they are constantly being bombarded with our feelings of anxiety and stress. In addition, since we are home most of the time, we are throwing off their normal routine.
Pets thrive on a routine. They know when you get up, leave for work, and return from work. This routine gives them comfort and gives them downtime to relax without “the humans” around. Now our pets are “on-call” 24/7. This can lead to them becoming irritable, anxious, and even depressed.
To help your pets during this stressful time try to establish a new daily routine. Make sure this new routine includes quiet times with privacy. This is especially important with cats who really enjoy their alone time. For dogs try to set up a consistent schedule of walks, play, and quiet time around the same time every day. This consistency in our pet’s schedule will give them a routine that will provide comfort during these crazy times.