Pets, pet owners face separation anxiety when workers return to the office

Melissa Alm’s dog, Ivan, barks as she leaves the front door and heads for work.

There was always separation anxiety in the Arum Chihuahua and Dachshund mix, but it was exacerbated by the pandemic. Staying home with my dog ​​all day while working away seemed fine at first. But Alm was worried that Ivan would become more and more nervous every time he left home.

Last month, Alm, a real estate manager in Redwood City, California, learned that he had to come to the office three days a week. Fearing to leave the dog alone, she chose a day when she knew her partner could stay home and watch over him.It helped, but she’s still worried about how Ivan goes..

“It’s actually pretty painful,” Alm said.

Rescue puppies Rascal and Jude take a nap. (Maria Prusinella)

Pet owners are often more concerned about separation than pets

The pandemic pet phenomenon was one of the few positive victories in 2020. Demand for pets has skyrocketed. Americans worked from home or laid off to seek animal dating. Some shelters had a hard time catching up with it.

But for many workers, the cozy days of working from home are nearing the end. And separation anxiety is imminent.

Seattle game designer Heather Conover did crate training in November when he adopted the French Bulldog Bumblebee. She didn’t want him to be in need when she got back to work. Conover did not foresee himself developing separation anxiety.

“It’s really difficult because I have an attachment to her. I think I’m a person with separation anxiety disorder,” says Conover. “I love this dog dying, and she was very comforted by me during the pandemic. She looks perfectly fine without me.”

Rio, the son of rescue, sits under a tree and stares at the abyss
Rio, the rescuer, looks into the abyss. (Maria Prusinella)

Dog pedestrians are in demand as they return to the office loom

According to a March survey by Banfield Pet Hospital, more than 30% of owners seek advice from veterinarians to facilitate the transition of pets to face-to-face work. Returning to the office, 68% of Gen Z owners and 42% of millennials plan to hire dog pedestrians or book dog day care locations.

However, caring for pets is not cheap. According to a survey, about 20% of owners are considering looking for another home for their pet if they cannot take it to the office.

Some employers allow workers to bring their pets to work. Pet-friendly policies increase employee retention and bring pet-owning workers back to the office.

But when dogs and cats aren’t welcomed into the office, there are pet sitters like Jessica Avanacy, president of the National Association of Pro Petsitters.

Abernathy’s business in Chicago has skyrocketed in the last few months, partly due to the return of owners to the office. She is more anxious about her clients than her pets — they are reluctant to break up with their animals or are eager for updates on how they behave.

“I feel to everyone who has to adopt a pet and get back to work during a pandemic,” says Abernathy. “This is almost like having a newborn child and you have to go back to work after maternity leave. There is an initial anxiety about getting back to work,” My baby is okay. Is it? “

Abernathy has found that pet sitters, dogwalkers, or anyone other than their owners can rest assured that they will handle their pets. Pets need to associate with other people and other dogs. And sometimes they need a break from their overly careful owners.

“Fido absolutely wants to take a nap without bothering him,” says Abernathy.

Savannah Sicurella is an intern at NPR’s Business Desk.

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Pets, pet owners face separation anxiety when workers return to the office

Source link Pets, pet owners face separation anxiety when workers return to the office

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