With summer over, pet owners are contending with challenges far beyond
those delegated by their bosses -- how to keep Fido and Fluffy happy and
healthy while their owner is at work.
Many working professionals don't fully consider the implications of owning
a pet that will be kept indoors all day.
If regularly left alone for long periods, pets can suffer from depression,
anxiety and aggressiveness and can become destructive.
With this in mind, Paul Mann, founder and president of FETCH! Pet Care,
offers this advice on how pet owners can have a career and a happy, healthy
Daily exercise is top priority. Dogs should get a minimum of three brisk
walks of 20 minutes or more each day to exercise joints, release energy
and promote proper metabolism. For indoor cats, take 10 minutes each day
to get them moving using cat toys or string.
Socializing is not just for humans. Find ways to socialize and entertain
your dog each day, such as a trip to off-leash parks or recreation areas
where they can run and play with other dogs. When they're home and you're
not, consider turning on the radio or television.
Proper diets are a must. Your pet will be far happier and healthier if
you feed them a brand pet food designed for their specific size and/or
breed, with keeping meal portions in moderation. While you think feeding
your pet scraps from the dinner table is OK, you could be doing more harm
Just as you need a good night's sleep to fully recharge your battery, so
does your pet. Assuring Fido and Fluffy have a solid night's slumber, with
intermittent naps in between, can do wonders for their disposition.
Consider pet management options carefully. Think twice before enrolling
your pet in a boarding or day care facility.
While some animals do fine, many experience adverse effects due to overcrowding
in small areas with other pets, stress from alpha dogs and even health
issues such as kennel cough or canine influenza.
Consider maintaining an in-home care environment, instead, either with
a professionally trained, screened, licensed, bonded and insured pet sitter
coming to your home each day or your pet going to the sitter's home.
2006 by United Press International.