It’s an extraordinary twist of fate; Covid has saved the lives of about 4 million companion animals in the USA. This is because of soaring adoptions during the pandemic. The information relates to 2020 so it’s a bit out of date and I can’t find current figures. I would expect the current figures to be even better. The Best Friends Animal Society has estimated that there was an almost 50% decrease in cat and dog euthanasia in American shelters. They say that it is the biggest fall in cats and dogs killed at rescue centers in their 37-year history.
And a different source, Today’s Veterinary Business tells us that, as at October 2020 (once again a little out of date), an estimated 11.38 million US households adopted a new companion animal during the pandemic. The information comes from the American Pet Products Association. As expected, the survey confirmed that spending time with a cat or dog helped to reduce stress in people who had become stressed by Covid. That, after all, was the reason why they adopted cats and dogs in the first place. They canvassed 2,000 people and the survey took place in September 2020.
They found that 16% of Generation Z respondents and 13% of millennials welcomed a new companion animal during the pandemic. Three percent of baby boomers adopted a new cat or dog.
It’s good news but there is a potential downside which has been well discussed, namely that some adoptions were probably made impulsively which may lead to the return of these animals to shelters when the owners go back to work in the conventional manner i.e. at the office, because they find it too difficult to look after a companion animal. I don’t think hard information is available about that at the moment.
What is certain, though, is that many cats and dogs have enjoyed the Covid pandemic as have many people! I met a woman yesterday in Richmond Park. She was walking her French Bulldog. She was a friendly dog and the woman said that they had had a great time together during the extensive social distancing lockdowns in the UK last year. Also, she said that her work arrangements had changed so that she worked at home far more often which naturally benefited her dog and their relationship. There have been many benefits to Covid but sadly it appears that many of them are temporary such as cleaner air due to less traffic.
China: when pets get Covid they are killed. When people get Covid they are treated. Unfair and immoral.