No longer working from home? Ways to take care of your pet

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 10:06 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 28, 2021 at 11:04 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Animal shelters around Region 8 are feeling the impacts of people returning to work, as many adopted pets are being returned. The NEA Humane Society shares ways you can still take care of your pet, even with a busier schedule.

“We did see quite a bit of increase in our adoptions when people were staying home, which is great. Unfortunately, we have seen some come back. We usually get about an average of four to five returns a month,” said Hillary Starnes, executive director.

Starnes says if daycare isn’t an option, there are some ways you can keep your pet comfy at home.

“You can purchase a large kennel. Make sure it’s big enough so that they can move around. If they have to stay at home all day while you’re at work, make sure they have something to do while they’re in the kennel, a treat, a toy, something like that,” said Starnes.

Ways to reduce separation anxiety include giving your pet a treat or toy when you leave and come back. Train them to be alone by starting small. Leave them alone for a couple of hours, then gradually work up to the full eight to nine hours.

If you find you can’t take care of your pet, try to find them another home.

“Try to find a family member even if it’s for a temporary situation. Bringing them back just puts more stress on an animal,” said Starnes.

There are some things to take into consideration before you adopt a pet.

“Financially, can you handle a dog or a cat? They do require vet visits once a year, sometimes twice a year. Make sure they have the food, the water, a bed, the proper housing for outdoors,” said Starnes.

If you’re down on your luck, the humane society can help.

“Our food pantry has really increased since COVID, people lose their jobs, so we’re here to maybe get them to the next paycheck, so they do not have to make that decision to either bring them here to surrender them over to us or they can keep the dog if we help them out with a little food,” said Starnes.

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