As us humans batten down the hatches and stay on home soil for the next little while, the furry members of your family are probably experiencing feelings of equal parts excitement and confusion at your sudden extended presence in their life. Changing to this new normal can bring about unique challenges for pet parents, but we promise it is possible to get your life sorted whilst managing both the four and two legged members of your isolation bubble.
Develop and maintain a new ‘business as usual’
We’re all creatures of habit when it comes to schedules. Your cat meows on cue every morning at breakfast time and your dog sits tail wagging with patient impatience when it’s time for his daily walk. Just because you physically leaving the property for work has been taken out of the equation, doesn’t mean all the other aspects of your day-to-day routine should be. Pets like to keep to a routine too and so maintaining some level of their old normal is important in minimising their (and your) stress.
Consistency is key: If your pets slip up, remember ignoring bad behaviour and rewarding good behaviour is a great tool in helping them meld to the new ‘business as usual.’
Exercise the mind
While keeping your pets physically active is important, mental stimulation is often more tiresome and rewarding for them and you.
Encourage independent play time with stuffable toys for dogs (Top tip: Smear peanut butter over the hole or freeze the toy filled with treats in the freezer to make harder) and treat balls or electronic chasers for your cat.
Now is also the perfect time to teach them new tricks! Schedule training time each day to prevent boredom and keep their day interesting. Remember short, positive training is the most effective for dogs. Breaking up training with play also helps to consolidate their new knowledge.
Sleep = Productivity
It’s well known our pets love a good midday nap (our cats on average sleep for 14 hours a day). Take advantage of this time and tick those important things off your daily to-do list. If your dog is crate trained and often spends periods of down-time in their crate on a normal day, allowing them time to do this today can also work well when you need some quiet time. If your dog is distracted by seeing you in the same room as them, covering the crate with a blanket can help create an environment of calm and encourage them to sleep.
It’s not about perfection
Remember it’s normal to get distracted during a normal day, so the dog pawing at your feet for attention and the cat deciding now is the perfect time to walk across the keybofrbfksbceruiard is no different. It won’t be perfect, but nothing ever is. Don’t be too hard on yourself or your pets and let’s all get through this together.
Whether you’re working from home, taking up a new hobby, or filling your days with the latest Netflix Crime Docco series, we sure hope you have a pet to warm your lap. Rest assured wherever you are and whatever you’re doing, K9 Natural and Feline Natural are continuing to produce and supply naturally better nutrition to the world.