Since sports have been put on hold, one BBC broadcaster who covers it has been spending extra time with his two Labradors, Olive and Mabel. So, Andrew Cotter used this opportunity to sit down with them and have a difficult conversation, delivering the Labs’ annual performance report.
It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows, though. Sofas have been ruined, and not a single one of the 913 squirrels they had chased have been caught.
Scroll down and join the 4.3 million people who have already watched how the doggos took the news.
BBC sports broadcaster Andrew Cotter has delighted the Internet with a parody Zoom call that featured his two adorable Labradors
Olive and Mabel are just two of the millions of dogs and cats who are loving the extra time they are getting with their humans right now. However, the various stay-at-home orders put in place around the world to fight the coronavirus pandemic restrictions will begin to ease sooner or later.
Experts at Best Friends Animal Society, a no-kill animal welfare organization, are advising people to start preparing their pets for the time when they won’t be with their moms and dads 24/7.
Some pets might react to this change by showing signs of separation anxiety. These include barking, howling, or whining when you leave (not just in response to noises outside of the home), especially for longer than 30 seconds, scratching or chewing at entrances and exits (doors/windows), destructive behavior that only happens when the dog is alone, over-grooming or other self-harm or obsessive behaviors, and a change in appetite.
Janelle Metiva CPDT-KA, a dog behavior specialist at Best Friends Animal Society in Los Angeles, shared a plan to help pet owners prepare to transition back to pre-quarantine life:
- Create a safe, comfortable place where they can have peaceful, relaxing alone time. This could be a crate or separate room, just make sure it’s the quietest part of the house.
- Provide them with enrichment that can be enjoyed independently, such as hidden treats in boxes, food puzzles, stuffed Kongs, etc.
- Play soothing music such as reggae, smooth jazz, or classical, or play the TV or radio to stations like the BBC or NPR while you’re gone to keep them from being startled by outside noises. You can also try a white noise machine.
- Reward your dog for calm, independent behavior (especially if they’re usually clingy). We tend to pay attention to dogs only when they’re active or even misbehaving. They should be rewarded for being calm and chill.
- Practice leaving for short periods of time to run essential errands or go for a walk.