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FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN  / Pet Peeves of a Peeved Pet /  Editorial List

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Gary Barg - Editor-in-chiefPet Peeves of a Peeved Pet

Hi, it's Morris. Or, as the folks around here know me, Daí Boss. Gary is away for a few minutes. (I need to talk with him about going away like that; he should be here all the time. Who knows? Maybe I need an emergency walk or scratch or dog biscuit.) Anyway, I didnít want too many days to go by this year without sharing with you one of my, ahem, ďpet peeves.Ē And that is the caring and feeding of your loved oneís pets.

I know you are wonderful caregivers to your human loved ones; making sure they get food, walks and the attention they need, but I donít want you to forget about those who keep their spirits up and for whom they careótheir pets. What our good friend Dr. William Thomas, founder of the Eden Alternative, has proven about long-term care facilities is true for home as well. Caring for a pet is great medicine for the loved ones for whom you care. So please donít ignore these four-legged caregivers.

Peeves from a Pet about Pet Care

  • Make sure that the situation is safe for your loved one and their pets. If it is too much of a challenge for your loved one to care for their pets but they want to keep them, contact a certified pet service to help.

  • Are the pets up to date with vet visits and shots?

  • Are they being properly fed?

  • Is improper care for your loved oneís pet causing a hygiene problem for your loved one?

But, donít take it from me alone. In one study I read, Dr. Judith Siegel from the University of California, Los Angeles reviewed the behavior of 938 Medicare enrollees and reported in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology that elderly people who owned a pet needed fewer doctor visits. (And they wonder what I do all day.)

Yet, when the health of your loved one is at stake by keeping a pet, a serious discussion with their physician is in order. And it is important to consider having a pet trust in place detailing your loved oneís wishes for their petís care if they should die before the pet.

Garyís coming back now, so I have to stop typing. Donít tell him weíve been talking, but take it from meóa pet can be a wonderful source of comfort for your loved one. As long as you make sure that they are being cared for as well as they care for their owners.



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