As we plummet towards another lockdown, it made me think this morning about how positive COVID has been for our pets, at least! We crossed the six-month mark of lockdown measures, had them eased for a wee break, and now there are noises about probably another six months of working from home for those that can.
And the dog's all say YIPPEEEEEEE!
For dogs are companion animals, and they just love to be by our sides for the most part. Dogs and humans have that in common, we have a strong instinct to be close to, to belong, and to be loved; for attachment essentially.
As we first went into lockdown, we found ourselves reveling in some of the upsides, more time with direct family, time with our pets, and time to slow down in an increasingly manic world.
But we also struggled with losing that connection and closeness with our loved ones outside of our household. I haven't seen my Mum since March, I'm writing this in September, and I know that I likely won't see her at Christmas or until next Spring probably. She suffers with chronic illness, and so we are playing it ultra-safe for the long term benefits.
But what other long term benefits does COVID present?
I'm calling it the COVID Connection. It's awakened an understanding in us of just how meaningful those connections with those we love is. If like me, you follow a lot of dog groups and pages and continuously immerse yourself in doggydom, then you too will have seen an abundance of content focused on separation anxiety in dogs throughout this pandemic.
We were so used to leaving our dogs to go to work, go out socially, run errands, etc. And now our dogs and all those pandemic puppy bundles have been used to inordinate amounts of time by our sides. And let's be honest, most of them love it!
So, while we all long to return to normal, whatever that is, I hope that we will retain how our dogs have thrived having more time with us. I hope that we will re-evaluate and continue to find ways to spend more time with our dogs by our sides. It's good for them and for us.
When your stress levels soar, and you take the time to sit with your pup for some one on one attention, don't you feel better? Or if you're struggling, then going for a walk with your dog hits the perfect reset button, doesn't it? Let us not forget that. Let us not forget what they do for us and how important we are to them.
I'll finish with a quote from Carl Jung;
Man needs difficulties; they are necessary for health.
Living through COVID has undoubtedly had its ups and downs. But these difficulties have the power to show us what really matters in life; for our health, our happiness, and our hounds.