Everyone knows how candid I like to be. This piece was not easy for me to write. It made me emotional on many levels. For some of you reading this there may be sections that are hard to read. Read it anyway. It is important to know all sides of this situation and what steps we can take for our animal loved ones.
It’s a very eye opening time. We are now coming full circle with the world opening up again in stages.
At the beginning of Isolation my clientele came to me with questions about how their pets were adjusting to being at home.
Now there is a greater concern. What is going to happen once we go back to work and to our social lives again.
For many isolation was lonely. Many people looked to bringing new family members into their lives. Many rescues found themselves without pets to adopt because so many were adopting.
Like the Christmas or birthday pet, the idea of caring for a new life will seem fun and novel. Then reality sets in. It’s work. It is an emotional bond.
Most owners seek out my services to help their pets know what to expect now that life is changing. What the new routine will be, and inquire about how their pets may feel about the upcoming new plan. Some want their pets input. Lizards, birds, cats, and even the occasional bunny mom will want to know how to navigate these times.
Others have called me looking for permission to re-home their pets because they just don’t have the time anymore. It’s to inconvenient.
Please know this is not just a covid thing. Over my twenty plus years of service to the animal community I have had owners who want to know if it’s okay to put their animal down because they’ve ruined the couch, or how their pet was doing because they decided to leave them at their old house as a gift to the new owners.
Nine times out of ten, it’s the owner that needs help adjusting to the circumstances than the animal. Animals are adaptable and sensitive to changes, and will work with us in anyway they can.
For those having difficulty with this transition, here are some things you can do to mitigate and help.
Watch your thoughts and what you say.
many thoughts go through the heads and hearts of a frustrated owner. Animals to one degree or another know and feel what you are thinking. Be careful your thoughts and what you say on front of your pet.
It is important for us to recognize when we are dismissive or trying to detach. Animas think they have down something wrong. It is important, like in any relationship, to reassure by staying connected. Hugs, kisses, statements like “what ever happens we will work through this and we are going to be okay” are extremely important.
Start your new work routine while you are still home.
Your walks may be earlier, feeding times May now adhere to your going to work schedule. Talk to them….yes!!!! Talk to them about why your are changing the routine. It’s confusing and can be scary for a little one. They have only known the life of isolation.
Many accredited puppy daycares and in home sitters and dog walkers exist. Get them use to going to play dates and let them know it’s a reward for them taking care of you and being so good to you for so long. That they are old enough now to take on this new adventure.
Leaving them on their own
Go out for short periods of time and extend that time little by little to help them adjust to the new lifestyle.
Rescue Bach remedy can help with feelings of separation and anxiety. It can be administered to both humans and animals about 15 minutes before you leave. (I like the spray because I can spritz some on my hands then pet my furry family with it.) for reptiles and birds spray in tank you only need to get it into the energy field.
Their are also animal videos on YouTube that are daycare oriented. Something to pop in when you leave that could feel comforting for your pet
A session with a communicator to chat with your pet is a great way to start your new routine. You can find out how your animal feels about your plans, ask them what they would like and if it has been a difficult time, create a bridge that can help you heal and understand each other’s needs in order to move forward.
Some things to talk about during a session
1. Talk about what is happening
2. How would they feel if you went back to work?
3. What could we do to make them feel comfortable about this transition.
4. Let them know that they haven’t done anything wrong
5. Let them know you will be coming back and that they are loved.
There are those times when re-homing may be necessary.
Fortunately, my cases have ended without this outcome. It is something no animal lover, owner or animal service worker wants to encounter. In some cases however, it is healthier for the animal, who is the main concern.
In these cases one must make sure with the utmost certainty that it is the right move. That all available avenues have been considered. Re-homing an animal is not easy for anyone. Please find someone who is accredited and has experience in finding good homes for this next part of your animals journey. Do your home work. Talk to your vet, family, other owners, your nearest pet store. You made a commitment to loving them. This is part of it if you can no longer handle the responsibility.
It is heart breaking for everyone involved when these events happen. Owners must consider before they get animals what the future looks like, rather than the short term gain.
Having said that my mother always said “Where their is a will, there is way” Covid pets were there at an integral time. If you truly wish to honour them, find a way to keep them a part of your life. You can. There is always someone who can help. Always remember…Better to reach out, than reach your limit.