It goes without saying that we are all living in uncertain times. It’s impossible to escape what is now the current reality and that is that COVID-19 is impacting everyone across the world.
From everyone now working from home (unless you are working in an essential service), kids being home schooled, all sports and social gathering being cancelled or banned, it’s a very stressful time for everyone.
The one bright spot for many people is being able to spend time with their pets. Depending on where you live, you can still go outside for a walk with your dog (as long as you are not living where there is a mandatory lockdown or you are not in mandatory quarantine, so please follow orders as hard as it may be). Please also respect distancing guidelines when you are out with your pet, especially at places like dog parks (and if they are closed, stay out). No one is exempt from this. No one.
But can you get it from your pet or can pets transmit it? As of right now, there is no evidence to suggest that and The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association has some excellent information regarding that on their website.
There’s been a lot of inaccurate and false information and articles out there, so please only read and share information from credible sources. I know there is a lot of fear out there, but please try to be mindful of the information you choose to share as it could lead more confusion and anxiety that many people are already feeling.
As per recommendations by health officials, vets and pet stores are considered to be essential services, but have all had to make adjustments. Many vets are by appointment only and if you are sick or symptomatic, you will not be allowed to enter the building. Vets clinics will also either have people wait outside in their vehicle while your pet is being examined or only allow on person at a time in the exam room.
Many vets also have policies regarding pick up of any medication your pet needs where you will have to call to pay over the phone and call when you arrive so things can be set outside for you to avoid any unnecessary contact right now.
Along with vets, pet food stores have also implemented policies regarding the number of people that are allowed in the store at one time. Almost all pet food stores are now offering curb side pick up or free home delivery of your order.
We all have a role to play in slowing the spread of this. We all want to get back to some form of normalcy, but we have to be patient. So, please wash your hands, stay at home (unless it’s absolutely essential) and spend some time with your pets.
And I want to end this by saying an absolutely massive thank you to everyone working on the front lines right now. To anyone working front line health care (doctors, nurses, receptionists, cleaning staff), pharmacists, EMS, police, grocery store clerks, truck drivers delivering essential goods, vets, postal workers and anyone doing delivery services right now, we salute you! Thank you for everything you are doing!