One of the major benefits of spending more time at home: Infinitely more time with our pets.
And it looks like all that time is paying off in the pet-owner relationship. A survey of 2,000 cat and dog owners found that seven out of 10 pet parents feel they know their animals more.
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As a pet owner quarantining with two dogs, Haddie and Cooper, I have learned a few new things about them:
- They definitely sleep more than I expected. Cooper spends the workday curled up next to me, frequently burrowing under my blanket. Meanwhile, Haddie makes herself at home in my pink armchair (or under it, if she's looking for a den).
- Their schedule rules all. If they decide it's time to eat or go out or wrestle on top of me, that's what's happening. Haddie has taken to laying on my keyboard when she needs my attention.
- Haddie and Cooper are extremely in tune with what's happening around here. They know exactly when the mailman is climbing up the stairs to our apartment door, and they respond accordingly by barking as loud as they possibly can.
The survey, conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Zoetis Petcare, also found that six in 10 respondents said that their pet has been acting differently during the pandemic.
I can't completely speak to Haddie and Cooper's habits while in normal times, but they haven't done anything much different besides develop new sleeping spots throughout the day. If anything, they seem more happy and relaxed.
Most importantly, 72 percent of dog and cat owners surveyed said they would not have been able to get through the quarantine without their pets.
That, I can confirm. Haddie and Cooper sleep next to me, make sure I get some exercise during the day and keep me company when things seem lonely.
If the pandemic has taught me anything about my dogs, it's that I'm more grateful for them than ever. For that, I'll tolerate the barking.