7 Ways To Keep Your Pet Engaged & Entertained In Pandemic | COVID-19 pandemic is a tough time for everyone. While there are worries about the virus on one side, everyone is experiencing a hectic schedule to balance work from home and the kids trying to e-learn. To top it all, if you have a pet, it can feel extra overwhelming. Dogs, especially, need stimulation to stay healthy and happy and, principally, to stay out of trouble.
Our pets have noticed that we’re spending much more time with them due to the pandemic. And let’s assume some of them think that we now understand their plight that almost all pets struggle with.
However, pets are savvy, and they know that you’re not just at home on vacation. Our way of dealing with the stress during this pandemic can adversely affect our pets. In many cases, it can even cause them to feel anxious and exhibit nervous behaviors such as urinating or defecating in the house, hiding, showing aggressive or destructive behavior, restlessness, excessive barking, and repetitive behavior or compulsive behaviors.
Our pets, particularly dogs and cats respond best to their human friends’ patient, calm, and optimistic attitudes. Simply put, they’ll be relaxed if you’re calm. Although we’re months into the global pandemic, yet we’re still not sure that our days in lockdown are over. Therefore, we have to consider our beloved pets, whose normal activities have changed, due to a restricted daily schedule, more than our own. With a positive attitude, a pinch of creativity, and a few tricks and treats, you can help your furry friend go through these tough times as effortlessly and anxiety-free as possible.
- Go for walk
Although walking isn’t the most creative option, yet we see all the memes about people walking their dogs these days. When walking the dog, you should plot out a route proven to help you avoid other people following social distancing. Walking will not only benefit your pet, but it will equally benefit you as much as your dog. It’s not a bad idea, after all, to get some fresh air, temporarily staying away from the news and the tension and stress of daily life.
Teach your pet new tricks
Whether you have a puppy or a dog, cat or a kitten, teaching a new trick is always super fun, especially if you get your kids in on the act. First, you can go for the easy trick, like getting your pet to give you the ‘paw’ or ‘shake’ when you provide them with a treat.
Or you can take this action to the next level by teaching your pet the name of the stuffed animals that your pet plays with to retrieve them for you. Either way, watching it learn something new is priceless, and it is a proud moment for a pet owner.
- Some alone time for your pet
Cat and dog owners already know the importance of letting their pets have some private space. Our furry friends are in a significant change in their regular daily routine, with every family member spending time at home with them. You may even have noticed your cat pacing nervously, hiding in the closet or behind furniture, or isolating in dark nooks. It implies that your cat needs some alone time at home to rest and recharge.
Create a cozy sanctuary in a corner or a separate room or for your pet and let them have uninterrupted rest time and quiet naps if you have the means and space at home.
Hide food games all around the house
You can keep your pets entertained during the lockdown by hiding treats or food puzzle games around the house. Moreover, one can even freeze treats inside a block of ice and make your dog or cat work for it. It is a creative way to keep your pet engaged and entertained, and it will boost their mental health too.
Schedule a playdate
Connect with a neighbor or a friend who has pets during the pandemic and hang out with them in each other’s home or just outside an open park. Introducing your pets to new buddies can help them a lot by reducing stress and keeping them active.
- Try out new activities while at home.
You can try out some new recipes for pet treats if you’ve always wanted to improve your cooking. There are many homemade recipes online, vegan dishes, grain-free, raw or traditional, gluten-free, and many more. Your animal companion can be the perfect assistant for you. They can help you with the sample tasting, and the two of you can have lots of fun together. Now is a great time to bring out the creative side and make unique, homemade pet accessories. You can make your animal companion Dog Collars, DIY clothes, leash, perfume, etc. will be one of a kind.
Don’t forget about mental stimulation.
Along with physical activity, it is essential to boost your pet’s brain. A great way to help your pets pass the time, help them relieve stress, sleep better and get rid of anxiety is by motivating them to take the initiative and stay curious most of the time. For mental stimulation, obedience training is a smart option but make sure that it is done correctly. Lockdown is an excellent opportunity to use some advanced training and follow your dog’s ability and mood.
If you have the means, try to organize a playdate for your pet. Nothing is more motivating and enriching for an animal than a fellow pet to play with. Follow all the safety measures and recommendations and do not jeopardize your health and wellbeing in the process. Keep the tips in mind and have a fun time with your friend.
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