7 Things To Do In Self-Isolation With Your Dog
Home > Latest News | 23 Mar 2020
Staying at home as much as you can is really important right now. No matter your age or level of health, we all have an important part to play in preventing the spread of COVID-19.
For dog-lovers like us, being instructed by the state and federal government to stay at home as much as possible sounds like a dream (no more making excuses to get out of social events when we really just wanna hang with our dogs, are we right??).
Dogs themselves are the winners of COVID-19 as they experience unprecedented levels of people being at home. To them, as pack animals, this is how they’d always want it to be. In fact, dogs don’t quite understand why we leave them every day for work :’(
Even if you don’t have your own dog and can’t commit to one long term, fostering is a great option right now. With less staff at shelters and less people adopting dogs, offering a temporary home will not only help an animal in need, but will also provide you with some companionship during these uncertain times.
So, here’s some ideas of what you and your doggo/s can do together while self-isolating:
1. Go for long walks
Maintaining exercise routines is an important part of keeping mentally and physically well, especially as gyms across the country close their doors. If you don’t have the virus or symptoms, authorities have advised it is safe to go for outdoor walks in large spaces. Just remember to maintain that safe distance from other people! Going for a long walk at a park will do wonders for you and will also keep your dog happy and socialised.
2. Make a snuffle mat
A snuffle mat is a homemade toy that provides the dog with an opportunity to sniff and search for hidden treats. They’re easy to make at home - all you need are some fleece strips, a rubber mat with some holes in it and to watch the below DIY video!
3. Watch movies on the couch together
The reality is, dogs are pure angels and just want to be around you no matter what. So sit down on the couch and binge that Netflix show you’ve been too busy to watch. Invite your dog to sit with you and to them, it’ll basically be Christmas.
4. Teach them a new trick
Have you always wanted to teach your dog to fetch, shake or rollover - but haven’t had the time? Now is the perfect opportunity, just make sure you have lots of treats on hand. Even if your dog doesn’t quiiiite pick it up, you’ll have lots of fun in the process!
5. Bake dog-friendly treats
Being stuck at home is the perfect opportunity to get creative in the kitchen! If you have some oats, pumpkin, dog-friendly peanut butter and coconut oil - you will be set! Check out some easy, health treat recipes here.
6. Get dog-friendly delivery
While cafes and restaurants are closed for eating in - many are still open for delivery. If you are able, you can support the small businesses that will be impacted by COVID-19 closures by ordering delivery for yourself and your dog (just make sure it’s dog-friendly!).
7. Get some of that unconditional love
For many people, this is a really scary and uncertain time. Getting some unconditional love off your dog can help the feelings of stress, anxiety and loneliness that might come with self-isolation. Studies have even found that:
- Pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression than those without pets.
- People with pets have lower blood pressure in stressful situations than those without pets.
- Playing with a dog or cat can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which calm and relax.
It’s clear that our dogs (and other companions) have mood-boosting powers and with their unconditional love, they will be able to help us through these testing times.
End note: There’s a lot of misinformation out there right now. But the World Health Organisation has confirmed that there is no scientific base to the claim that dogs and other pets can become infected with the latest strain of coronavirus. A pet-specific coronavirus has existed for years and is not associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. You should wash your hands regularly with soap and water when having regular contact with animals, but this is always the case, not just when there is a worldwide pandemic!