Times are uncertain right now. Many are feeling the stress. This anxiety applies to people and pets alike! Being stuck inside can be hard on both you and your furry friend. We’re all social creatures wired for connection. Despite the limited contact with each other and nature, we can still prioritize our and our pets’ well-being by committing to a few simple practices.
1. Ensure pet-care supply
Whether your area’s issued a stay-at-home order or not, it’s wise to stock up on supplies in general but also for your pet. “Stock up” does not mean hoard or buy in excess so others cannot meet their needs. It means mindfully buying a little extra, so we’re able to stay at home. For our pets, securing a supply to last 2-4 weeks could not only ease your mind but theirs. This includes things such as food, treats, supplements, medications, litter, pee pads/newspapers, and other needed items for pet health. If CBD is a part of your pet’s routine, it’s wise to be prepared with that too! CBD not already part of your regular routine? Since it’s often used for stress and pain, it could be ideal to consider adding with the guidance of a trusted healthcare professional, especially during this time. If curious to learn more about CBD for your pets, check out our other blogs or reach out. If you're ready to give Bailey's CBD a try, please use code TRYBAILEYS25 for 25% off your first order.
2. Create a schedule
Help break up the monotony of being inside by creating a schedule for your pet. Structure allows them to focus and develop routines they look forward to. It’s comforting, like it is for people.Continue their regular feeding schedule, and if possible, walk dogs on their usual schedule (using proper health precautions). If walking outdoors isn’t doable, establish new indoor routines to replace missing routines. Stay consistent with your furry friend’s supplements, medications, CBD, and other health-related rituals. With CBD and how it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, consistency is key for the most noticeable results.
Pet potty tips for when you can’t leave the house: If unable to leave the house, parents may need to develop new bathroom routines for non-litter
box users. If you don’t have access to a backyard or an enclosed outdoor space, many professionals recommend to treat it as if still taking them outside to potty. Act like you usually would when going for a walk outside, including picking up leashes, bags, or treats. This helps your dog understand what’s going on, even if only going to a room corner instead of around the block. It’s also recommended to place pee-pads or newspapers in a small area designated as your pet’s potty. Some dogs may naturally be confused, and you may need to repeat the process of “prepping” them for walks before they understand they can relieve themselves inside. Be patient and as always, practice proper hygiene. Designate cleaning products for your pet’s potty area to make things easier.
There aren’t many avenues to channel all this adrenaline while quarantined in smaller spaces. However, research shows that exercise not only improves our overall health but can also be an effective stress-reliever. Physical exercise
Able to go outside? Stick to your dog’s walking routine as much as possible, practicing strict social distancing, health precautions, and staying close to home. The fresh air, plants, and sunlight-infused Vitamin D can make a big difference for our health and nervous systems. Even if unable to go out, try to enjoy sunlight and nature through windows for both you and your pets. Unable to go outside? Exercise for our pets can be more challenging. Engaging in gentler indoor physical activities like rolling catch and chases can provide needed stimulation and cardiovascular activity. This could also be a fun opportunity for training sessions with your dogs especially, possibly using a daily meals as a reward. For dogs accustomed to high physical activity, some parents may attempt more advanced training, like spins, rollovers, or weaving between legs.
Mental exercise: Physical activity may be more difficult, but mental exercise and stimulation is still an option! Training doggos covers both physical and mental aspects. But we can entertain all our furry children with puzzles and games that stimulate their mind. One way is hiding treats for them to find. Create games like arranging boxes (from all those deliveries) and hiding treats inside for pets to
find, rearranging them once they do. We can also strategically place them around the house and celebrate after being found. Get creative! Meals and treats are great incentives. A daily meal can be used as a reward for your kitty too, though we know most felines often aren’t as interested in physical tricks like canine friends… They’re adept at entertaining themselves (sometimes at our expense), more accustomed to being inside all day. However, they need attention too! Particularly during times where they feel surrounding stress. Actively playing with them in uninterrupted sessions before feeding at night can be a helpful way
to get the exercise they need and prepare for a good night’s rest. Puzzle toys or treat dispensers could be beneficial, time-consuming additions for both cats and
dogs. Feeding pets meals from food toys may also provide added excitement to their day.
4. Extra lovings and rubbings
Dedicate at least 15 minutes a day (ideally more, if able) to petting, cuddling, and calmly breathing with your pet. Connection with others (pets included) helps regulate our nervous systems and reduce stress. Giving them this undivided attention, affection, and serene space helps them feel safe. When they feel safe and calm, their bodies can function healthily.
5. Take care of yourself
Take care of yourself! Your health matters. Make sure you’re eating well, sleeping, and doing what you need to feel connected and safe during this time. Pets can pick up on our stress, which may further trigger their anxiety. Notice that you’re giving your pet (and yourself) a little extra CBD? You aren’t alone. Research already shows how much stress impacts the body. Right now, there’s a lot of adrenaline in enclosed spaces. Many nervous systems and bodies are working overtime trying to regulate themselves. It’s okay to give yourself extra rest, extra time, and extra care. Our bodies support us all day every day. They need the same from us. We can help support our pets during this time, like they’ve supported us with their snuggles and happy greetings. A sudden change to their lifestyle can be confusing and scary for them too. Like people, they just need extra love and reassurance sometimes. If concerned about your pet, always reach out by phone to a trusted veterinarian. Although it feels like we’re alone, we aren’t. We’ll get through this together.