Pets getting more attention with owners home during virus pandemic

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Ufuoma George made the decision to adopt a dog only a few weeks ago, when she knew she was going to have to go on lockdown in her New York apartment during the coronavirus pandemic. She named the black labrador retriever Lala.

“I feel like it’s important because being alone at home kind of is hard but with a pet you have someone to take care of, someone to play with you, someone to greet you in the morning so it’s kind of like really calming and comforting during this time.” 

Having a new puppy isn’t always easy though. Just ask Laura Evans’ family in Bethesda, Maryland. Their puppy Zoe needs constant attention, so they’ve decided holding her is the best option. 

“We are keeping her in our hands while we all work and passing her throughout the family. So I’m scanning my email right now and she’s watching it with me.”

Nancy Karan says having a dog helps to get her out of her New York apartment and interact with other dog walkers, at a safe distance.

“The only people that I’ve talked to in the past two weeks are all of my dog owner friends in the neighborhood and in my building and it’s just a nice way of still connecting with human beings and the only reason we’re out is because we’re walking our dogs.”

Katie Lowing of Kentucky is hosting her daughter, son-in-law and their two boys during the pandemic because she has more room for the kids to play. Lowing has a dog named Big Puppy who climbs trees but jokes now that she does it seeking alone time.

“I think she needed some time to herself there were so many people in the house.” 

Camilla Webster of Key West, Florida, is a painter and has jokingly given her dog Leo the title of painter assistant.

Rachael Pavlik, the owner of a hedgehog in Houston named Quillie Nelson, says having pets helps to create normalcy — especially for her kids.

“It’s good for the kids to have a sense of normalcy and a sense of responsibility like they have to get out of bed before noon to feed their animals. So that’s a plus,” she said.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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