How to Care For Your Pets When Life Gets in the Way



I know that we all go through times when life gets out of control.  People get sick, things get crazy at work,  the kids are involved in 5 different extracurricular activities… the list can go on forever,  and everyone has their unique situations. Unfortunately,  just like the rest of the family,  the pets need care, too.


Unless it’s just you and your critters in the house,  you can always delegate some duties.  At the bare minimum,  pets need to be fed, watered, and cleaned up after. Even young children can help in that department. If you are the lucky one that gets to do all of the pet care, make sure that you keep a list of what each animal needs, and post it somewhere obvious. That way, you can be sure that whoever is taking over for you can get by for awhile. This even gives you the option of having a friend or family member come over to help in a pinch. You might consider finding a friend whom you trust to be prepared to come over in an emergency to feed your pets, and you can be their emergency backup. It also is a good idea to line up a boarding kennel or a pet sitting service that you can use if you suddenly have to leave town.  Don’t be afraid to ask for references,  or ask around to see who other people lose. Leaving them with someone you trust can save you a lot of worry.

This week,  things have been challenging at our house.  We have four dogs and three cats, so, believe me,  if you are late feeding someone or letting them out, they definitely let you know.  My poor honey went from having a cold, to having pneumonia.  Of course,  this meant running tothe doctor,  the grocery store, the drug store.  You all know the drill.  This was in the midst of me trying to get this blog sorted out and changing hosting services, which,  frankly,  I wish I’d waited a week,  because before long, I also got his cold (I’m working on this from bed, because I feel dreadful). That leaves both of us under the weather. We went from me taking care of everyone,  to Mike stepping in now that he’s feeling somewhat better.

Sometimes, you might have a pet that needs a little more attention than the others. In our house,  that’s our dog Kaliegh. At two years old, this girl is full of energy,  and because she is being trained for Schutzhund,  she is very fit. Most days she gets extended play and train sessions from Mike.  His being sick left us with a 75 pound dog literally bouncing off the walls.  The solution,  which at least took the edge off,  was to take her out back and keep her running after some tennis balls. Normally she also gets a lot of motivational obedience and tug play,  and without that,  she never really settled. Dogs hate it when you break routine.

When life gets in the way,  you might have to get creative to keep up with everyone,  including the pets.  Do yourself a favor,  write up some instructions ahead of time,  and line up some backup now, before you find yourself stuck.

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