In the last several months of the pandemic, Americans have been adopting pets at a higher rate, especially dogs. Dogs are great companions and are commonly referred to as a “man’s best friend.”
“Right when COVID hit …our adoptions rates did spike, and we’ve had a lot more visits since COVID hit,” said Elizabeth, a worker at the Orange County Humane Society in Huntington Beach, California.
Stephanie Cuevas, an employee at PetSmart in Costa Mesa, California agreed, commenting, “Since the pandemic has started, we actually have gotten a lot more people to adopt pets. I really think it’s because everybody’s bored at home. We’ve actually been sold out on a lot of our animals for quite some time since the pandemic started.”
The shelter-in-place and quarantine restrictions of the pandemic have allowed kids and adults to be home and have the time to care for their new pets. Whether you adopt a puppy or a dog from a shelter or a breeder, raising, caring for and training a puppy is hard work: potty training, sleep training, and teaching tricks.
Potty training of puppies requires that someone is at home constantly. When puppies have not gotten all their vaccines yet, they should not go on walks until at least 16 weeks old. parvovirus is a virus that dogs can get from other dogs and from dirty things from outside that might have been exposed to parvovirus, so you have to be careful when giving your puppy anything.
Travel restrictions and remote working arrangements of employees and distance learning for kids have allowed people to be available at home and more willing to handle sleep training of puppies, which can be very difficult for owners, because many puppies will cry and bark at night due to separation anxiety. Also, because people are staying home more, they have more idle time and are experiencing more loneliness. Due to social distancing, kids cannot see their friend as easily and families cannot gather.
“A lot of people are bored at home,” said Stephanie of PetSmart. “I feel like a lot of parents want[ed] their kids to be occupied…because the kids were lonely and didn’t have anything to do, I think parents decided to do a lot of pet adopting.”
Elizabeth of Orange County Human Society mentioned, “Because people are starting to stay home a little bit more…they feel like they need a friend to stay with them.”
Although the coronavirus has had many negative impacts on our lives, it seems one silver lining has been that people are adopting pets at a faster pace.