With the world in a constant state of change, we have often been unsure of what will happen next.
With the world in a constant state of change, we have often been unsure of what will happen next. It’s been an unusual time for us, but how many of us have considered how the world has changed for our beloved pets too? We have created a top ten list of ways life has changed for our furry companions and highlight how you can help them cope.
1. Lonely pooches
With many of us working from home, our animals have become used to extended periods with us and some may now find it difficult when being left on their own. Giving pets a comforting space away from you during the day can relieve a pet's over-attachment. To help ease your cat or dog’s anxiety, try leaving them a mentally stimulating toy, such as one that drops treats, or in an enriched environment to keep them occupied.
2. Fresh faces
With less time in coffee shops and other meeting places, more people are shifting to house gatherings. Having an increase in visitors coming to your home, can over-excite or worry your dog, causing them to jump up. Putting your dog on a lead and asking your visitor to wait to say hello until they have calmed down can really help. Once the dog and visitor have been introduced in a calm way leaving your dog’s lead on while you sit with your visitor can help you keep the situation under control.
3. Knocks, rings and deliveries
Less trips to the high street and more online shopping mean we are receiving more deliveries than ever before. We all love a delivery, but not all dogs feel the same, strangers at the door can make dogs feel threatened and cause unwanted behaviours. To help your dog become accustomed to this try using a baby gate a couple of meters from the door, and work towards training your dog to sit, on a matt, near the door when they hear the bell.
4. Puppy pals
If you brought a new puppy into your home recently, it may not have had the opportunity to mingle with other dogs. Introducing your companion to other canines on a short controlled leash can help them get used to meeting, greeting and playing with others.
5. Changing routines
Pets are creatures of habit, and if those habits are changed, it could cause your animals stress. If you start seeing changes in their temperament, it may be time to make a few alterations in the house to help ease this for them. Keeping food and water in a quiet space can make them feel safe. Give your pet some attention if they request it (just don’t overdo it), or a stimulating toy to help engage their natural senses. Providing cats with a quiet hiding space to relax in can also help.
6. Homemade healthy snacks
Spending more time at home can make it very easy to fall for those puppy dog eyes time and time again. Pets love treats but giving them too many could mean your animal companion piles on the pounds, which can be detrimental to their health. Making healthy homemade treats can help your pet stay in shape while still allowing you to treat them occasionally.
7. Quiet time
Pets can be very independent, especially cats. If you are spending more time at home, they may feel like they are not getting the space they are used to. You can help them by creating a safe space, such as a crate for dogs or snuggly hide-away for cats. If they choose to be in a separate room, allow them the time to be alone with no fuss, they will soon come back for cuddles when they want them.
8. Stress Warning Signs
It has been a stressful time for all of us, and your dog can pick up on that. Remember raising your voice to your pet will only distress them more, so keep calm and be sure to look out for your pet’s stress warning signs. These can include:
- Licking lips repeatedly
- Excessive yawning
- Going to the toilet in unusual places
- Turning their heads from side to side
9. Help each other to relax
With less commuting and more time in your day it’s a great opportunity to spend more time with your pets if you have a dog, you should also consider the type and intensity of the exercise you are giving them. Keep exercise varied and appropriate for the age and health of your dog and consider the weather and external conditions.
10. Mental Health
Being stuck indoors isn’t much fun for anyone so be sure to look after your pet’s mental health and remember they are great for your mental wellbeing too. Playing hide and seek is a great way to stimulate your dog mentally. Leave treats hidden in various places around the house and let your dog sniff them out. At Petplan we can’t help but smile watching our dogs find all the treats.
Your cat might even be up for some playtime too!
How Petplan can help
The way we live, work and play has changed and this has changed things for our pets too. From their routines to the social interaction they receive and the way they are fed and exercised - there may have been more changes than you realised! By taking additional steps to ensure their physical and mental needs are still met you can make all the difference for your furry friends. Having Petplan insurance can help you get your pet the best care and we are continuing to do all we can to support our customers during these uncertain times. This includes:
- Paying out over £6million in claims every week to help pets get the veterinary care they need
- Covering the cost of post for medications to reduce the number of face to face interactions needed when caring for your pet
- Covering the cost of boarding your pet at a licensed boarding establishment or paying £30 a day towards the cost of someone looking after your pet if you are hospitalised for 2 or more consecutive days as a result of Covid-19.
We’d love to hear how your pet’s world has changed and how you have helped them enjoy their new normal, share your stories with us at #PethoodStories!