Leo’s Social Distancing
Like most of us and our pets, Leo has been feeling the effects of social distancing. Unfortunately, Leo doesn’t understand why he hasn’t gone to the park or the beach, and he really doesn’t understand why we don’t stop and say hello to the neighbors on our walks. Now, every time we see other people or dogs on our walks Leo lights up and tries to direct the walk towards them. If we do cross paths he tries to lunge at them. The lunge isn’t an aggressive lunge, it’s a “love me, pet me” plea for attention. For those who don’t know Leo it can be a scary sight seeing such a large dog coming at you, but those who do know him, know he is all fluff and no bite. However, we usually hold him back because aggressive or not, he’s a hefty 95 lbs of fluff.
The social distancing has also completely changed Leo’s perspective on car rides. Before the stay-at-home order, Leo would come to work with me every day, meaning he would get into a car 20 times a week at the minimum. He had never liked car rides so he was never enthusiastic about jumping in. In fact, I usually needed to coax him with treats to jump in. Since we’ve been home, Leo hasn’t been in the car much at all. After a few grocery store trips, Leo was upset that he wasn’t coming along. So we decided to take him along whenever it was possible, like picking up take-out. In the past two years, we’ve had Leo, I’ve never seen him more excited about jumping into the car. Now, he can barely wait until the door is open before he launches himself into the backseat. He also absolutely loves sniffing outside the windows, whereas before he wouldn’t go near the open window.
Hopefully, when Leo starts going to work every again day he’ll continue to love car rides just as much as he does now.
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i know this is especially difficult for dogs that love interaction with other dogs and people. Poor Leo, he just has mom and dad to play with….Maybe if you got him a big stuffed dog, he might think it was another dog. my girls have not been that affected because we dont go to dog parks, or really socialize unless it is at a local pet party. they have plenty to keep them busy like barking at the deer, bunnies, and birds. we go for runs in the fields at my house. however, i have noticed that when i am out in the yard and they are on the deck or their pen, my youngest gets very anxious, both will start barking or whining. When i need to go to the store, which is very rare these days, my youngest cries when i get home. i have to hold both girls and tell them i would never leave them. i think it is going to very hard on pets when their parent go back to work, especially dogs, not so much cats because they are very independent most of the time. Dogs get used to a routine and their routine now is having their parents at home 24/7. Leo looks so sad in the picture above, guess mom and dad will just have to entertain him and play games in the house.
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