Guwahati: Adjusting to the new routines of work from home sure is a new experience for many of us. It comes with its own set of positives and negatives. From the cookie jar right next to your work station in pajamas to the challenges of constantly communicating with people which include colleagues, your children, and your pets as well, life can get really difficult amid the national lockdown over COVID-19 pandemic.

Our pets have a special place in our hearts and hence even they know if we are down in the dumps or feeling the blues. Pets who are allowed to roam free in the house will now try to get your constant attention — from distracting us of that power nap to howling and mewing for cookies and treats.

In this time of gloom and despair, your pets can save you from  the feeling of loneliness and isolation

Although this constant communication and attention might seem to be annoying, you should know that for your pets this is a new change in their life as well. To be able to see their friend-cum-master 24×7 is a change in their routine as well. Besides, in this time of gloom and despair, only pets can save us from feelings of loneliness and isolation.

So, here are five ways to reduce both you and your pet’s stress levels and keep them entertained as well:

Enough rest: Most pets (ones that are allowed to roam freely inside the house — not fish or your pet spider) often sleep while their family members are out for work or schools and colleges. Hence, having us constantly around them might mean very little rest whatsoever. So having a specified place where they are not disturbed by our video or zoom conferences or children and they can catch on some Zs.

Safe space: Do not encroach their safe space especially when you have all your family members sitting together in the same house. Make sure that your dog, cat or any four-legged pet has that special corner, crate box, utility room, or bedroom which is their own. This is more imperative given the present lockdown scenario.

Make sure that your pet has a safe space for themselves so that no one approaches them during this lockdown

Social media challenges: Instagram, Facebook & Tic Tok are filled with so many hilarious challenges that can be done with your pet. The “jumping the barrier” challenge is one such example. Such challenges allow your pet to have a bit of exercise at home stimulating their mental health and also allows you to put a bit more attention to your pet and can act as a stress buster as well.

Exercises: If your pet is among those who enjoy long walks, running down the street than they are going through the worst phase right now. The government even though allows people to walk their pets by maintaining the required physical distance, it is still risky to go out right now. Hence, to calm those zoomies (dogs and cats running manically for no reason) try to teach them some new tricks which can be realistic as well. Teaching them to fetch the TV remote might make you lazy but will allow them to be physically fit.

Shower them with love: Know that your pet might not understand this sudden change of routine with no outdoor walks and his/her friend being in the house 24×7 but you do. Hence, it is imperative to reduce their stress by spending a bit more time with them. This will act as a stress-buster for both you and your pet.

Pets deserve our love and attention, now more so than ever

Lastly, even if WHO has stated that there is no evidence that your pet can transmit the virus, it is still important to keep their hygiene in mind as well. Wiping the paws with sanitizer after they go out for a walk or to answer the nature’s call is one such way.

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