Why Pets Will Keep You Sane During COVID-19 Lockdown

As businesses are encouraged to have their employees working from home where possible, to promote healthy social distancing during COVID-19, many pawrents will be finding themselves thanking their lucky stars to have their precious furbabies keeping them company throughout the day.

Image: @hellocrumpet_thepug

Plus for extra peace of mind, the World Health Organisation has officially stated that “at present, there is no evidence that companion animals/ pets such as dogs or cats can be infected with the new coronavirus.” So what does that mean for you and your furbaby? You can cuddle the day away as much as you like, but it’s still a good idea to keep washing your hands with soap and water after contact with your pets – standard good hygiene practice.

How our pets can keep us happy and distracted

Besides the obvious, their unconditional love and laughing at their silly antics or goofy faces, there are a plethora of reasons why pets make our lives that much happier. They can boost your emotional, mental and physical wellbeing and are a blessing to have in life. If you’re not convinced already, we’ve listed our top reasons why having a pet will make you a happier person, especially during these uncertain times, below.

1. You’re responsible for them

Image: abc.net.au

It’s inevitable for life to get a little trying sometimes, and the Coronavirus pandemic has certainly proven itself to be one of the major curveballs for many Australians. By having a pet, you know that you’re responsible for maintaining the life and wellbeing of another creature, and not just your own.

No matter how your personal life is going, you know that you have to get up to feed your pet, clean it, walk it and ensure that your furbaby is being well looked after. This added responsibility helps to keep you going and makes you an all-round better person in life.

2. Pets keep your activity levels up

Think about all those mornings where you woke up feeling a little lethargic or had a case of the moody blues, and the thought of getting up just made you roll over and bury your head in your pillow, until you heard your furbaby carrying on, begging for their morning feed. Well, count yourself lucky because they’ve just given you a reason to start another day.

Whether it’s going to the park for a round of fetch with your furry BFF or just going for a brisk walk around the block to enjoy the fresh air, all the activities you do with your pet are counted as exercise. Moreover, bonding with your pet through physical activity will also boost your mood and energy levels, helping you to conquer the rest of the day.

3. Practicing self-love and affection

It’s not news that pets are an unending source of unconditional love. No matter what sort of day you’re having, they’re always ready for you to shower them with attention and reciprocate twice as much better. If you’re someone that’s prone to feeling lonely, and even more so during mandatory COVID-19 isolation periods, you can always rely on your precious fur child for genuine affection.

Scientific studies have shown that interacting with animals can help to increase levels of the hormone oxytocin, which is responsible for helping you feel calm and comfort.  Interacting with your pet simply through patting them, cuddling them or even just giving them a bath, are all ways to help you express your love and care, which will naturally extend itself to fellow humans.

4. Helping you make friends within the community

Image: Wollondilly Advertiser

Whether your furbaby is a cat, dog, ferret or gold fish, you’re bound to meet another pawrent when you’re our and about in the community. The dog park is a perfect example of how pets can bring the community closer together (as long as you’re practicing safe social distancing and the government hasn’t enforced a full lock down). Not just a place for dogs to have a good romp around and socialise with other four-legged friends, the dog park provides great opportunities for pawrents to get to know one another and bond over a mutual love of furbabies.

Just like mother’s group for new mums, you can rest assured knowing that you’re bound to meet other like-minded people from other walks of life, when you’re out and about spending time with your pet.

5. Pets can help you improve your communication skills for when you’re back at work

Image: Fun Cat Pictures

If only our beloved pets could talk to us, that would make our lives complete. At the same time, learning to read their non-verbal cues and practicing patience while communicating what you want clearly and slowly, can all help to make you a better communicator in your daily life.

 

 

How to Keep Your Dog Entertained Indoors During COVID-19

With our nation progressing through different stages of lock-down due to the unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic in a bid to flatten the curve, you might be wondering what fun indoor activities you can do to keep you dog entertained throughout the day.

Thankfully, we’re still able to take our puppers for a walk in the park or around the block, but when it comes time to fully self-isolate yourself at home, we’ve come up with a list of ideas to keep your pup’s tail wagging and you from going stir-crazy.

6 Fun indoor activities for dogs

1. Hide & Seek

Image: ADEW

An oldie but a goodie, who doesn’t love a good game of hide and seek? The only catch is that your dog has to be willing to stay and give you enough time to dash off and find a good hiding spot. If not, you can try to get someone else to keep your pup sitting still while you find a place to hide. It’s so simple and we have no doubt you’ll enjoy endless amounts of fun as your dog tries to sniff you out.

2. Easter Treat Hunt

Image: Visit Hillsborough

Now we all know that chocolate Easter eggs aren’t dog-friendly and should be well kept away to prevent your furry BFF from sneaking a few bites and avoiding an unnecessary trip to the vet. But with Easter just round the corner, you could consider planning a treat hunt just for your dog. All you need to do is to hide their favourite treats around the home, then sit back and relax while they hone in on their sniffing skills to hunt down the treat.

If your furbaby hasn’t played this before, you might want to start off by placing the treats in plain sight to get them used to the game, and progressively start hiding the treats in sneakier spots. Just limit the amount of treats you use each round, so you don’t accidentally over-feed your dog.

3. Frozen Treats

Image: Frenchie Journey

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a dog that doesn’t love peanut butter or yoghurt. By freezing their favourite mushy treat in a treat dispenser toy, such as a Kong, you can rest assured that your furry friend will be spending quite a while licking the toy obsessively, trying to get to all of the treats while it slowly melts. Another great way for fast eaters, this activity will help to slow them down and savour every minute.

4. Interactive Dog Toys & Puzzles

Image: Nina Ottosson

This is a great activity that will keep your dog’s mind stimulated. There are many options to choose from including affordable choices from your local Kmart pet section through to popular cult favourites such as the range from Nina Ottosson which you can find online. These toys and puzzles are designed to challenge your dog to find creative ways to get a treat out, using their paws and their brain at the same time.

5. Throwing a Toy Down the Hallway

Image: Dogtime.com

Now this might be an obvious one but it does the trick. If you’ve got a hallway or a slightly bigger room in your house, you can use a soft ball or their favourite stuffed toy for a round of indoor fetch. Throw the toy and make them fetch it to bring it back, and simply repeat. A good few rounds of throw and fetch is bound to tire them out for a good nap afterwards. This will keep them physically active even while indoors, if you can’t go for your usual walk around the block or to the park.

6. Where’s the Treat?

Image: UK Pets

A favourite amongst many pawrents, this is a game that will test your pup’s patience and IQ. One that you’ve probably seen before, is the three cup game. All you need is to get out three cups and line them up in a row in front of you dog. Start by putting a treat under one of the cups and get your dog to show you which cup the treat is under. If he guesses correctly, you can reward him with the treat. Once your dog is getting the hang of it, you can change things up by moving the cups around after you’ve placed the treat.

Transporting Bushfire-Affected Cats for PetRescue

With ongoing bushfires happening in rural NSW, affecting the local shelter, PetRescue stepped in to assist in the evacuation of four handsome kitties, Oreo, Yogi, Oscar and George. Working with Melbourne rescue organisation Maneki Neko Cat Rescue, the PetRescue team reached out to Jetpets to facilitate urgent flights from Sydney to Melbourne.

An amazing opportunity for Melbourne residents and community to work together to assist animals that have been displaced by the devastating bushfires, the team at Jetpets were proud to offer free flight and crate hire for the gorgeous purries.

Since then, we are happy to share that three out of the four rescued kitties have been adopted into their furever homes. Gorgeous Oreo is however, still waiting for her happy ending.

If you’d like to adopt this brave little trooper, you can find out more on her PetRescue listing.

 

Meet Tayla Harris’s Furbaby, Beans

At Jetpets, we work with pawrents in Australia and all across the globe with their interstate and international pet transport needs. Whether you’re relocating or taking your furbaby on a holiday with you, we love helping families ensure that no four-legged family members get left behind.

One lucky pup we’ve had the opportunity to look after on multiple occasions, is Tayla Harris’s Border Collie, Beans.

Image: @tayla_harris with her furbaby, Beans

Tayla Harris & Beans Jetpets Experience

Originally from sunny Brisbane, Tayla moved to Melbourne to pursue her sporting career. Her furbaby and son, Beans has been the perfect furry BFF since relocating to Melbourne. We’ve been fortunate enough to look after Beans’s travels whenever she flies home to Brisbane to visit her family and friends.

See why Tayla chooses Jetpets in the video below.

More about Tayla Harris

A phenomenal name in the sporting world, Tayla Harris is based in Melbourne as an AFLW player for Carlton FC while also balancing a successful boxing career. At just 22 years young, Tayla is a force to be reckoned with, already immortalised in bronze at Federation Square in Melbourne, celebrating her iconic moment as a female athlete.

Image: Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images

2019 Jetpets Happy Traveller Highlights

As 2019 wraps up and we welcome in the new decade that 2020 brings, Jetpets would like to take this opportunity to celebrate some of this year’s happy traveller highlights. Whether we helped you to welcome a new furbaby home, reunited you with a pet, made a pet-friendly holiday possible or helped you rescue a pet, thank you for letting us be a part of your journey. We look forward to looking after many more furry jetsetters, big and small, in the new year.

Have a wonderful new year with your furry companion of choice and may your house be filled with cuddles and kisses all around.


Linguine, the Dachshund

✈️Melbourne to New York, United States

linguine testimonial


Patch & Waffle, the Domestic Short Hairs

✈️Brisbane to Berlin, Germany

rachel testimonial


Nitro, the Rescue

✈️Sydney to Perth, Australia (via Pet Rescue & Canine Welfare Australia)


Clove & Cassia, the Tasmanian Devils

✈️Tasmania to Wellington Zoo, New Zealand


Coco, the Puppy French Bulldog

✈️Sydney to Melbourne, Australia

coco testimonial


Jay, the Australian Kelpie

✈️Sydney to Tokyo, Japan

japan testimonial


Smokey, the Rabbit

✈️Sydney to Baltimore, United States

liz testimonial


Bonny, the Collie

✈️Melbourne to Edinburgh, United Kingdom


Loki, the Siberian Husky

✈️Melbourne to Geneve, Switzerland

loki testimonial


Tenzing, the Red Panda

✈️Hamilton Zoo to Tasmania Zoo


Lulu & Wilbur, the Japanese Spitzs

✈️Brisbane to Vancouver, Canada


Whitey, the Domestic Short Hair

✈️Adelaide to Damman, Saudi Arabia

whitey testimonial


Hercules, the British Bulldog

✈️Brisbane to Singapore


Mysha, the Shiba Inu

✈️Sydney to Macau

mysha testimonial


Han Solo, the Domestic Medium Hair

✈️Sydney to Christchurch, New Zealand

han solo testimonial


Marilyn, the Rescue

✈️Melbourne to Townsville, Australia (via Pet Rescue & Hear No Evil Deaf Dog Rescue)


Lulu & Benji, the Pugs

✈️Sydney to La Paz, Bolivia

benji testimonial


Bringing Home a New Puppy

Jetpets Tips on Welcoming Your New Puppy Home

Congratulations on your new family member – so many memories and adventures await!

new puppy tips

When You Arrive Home, Allocate a Living and Sleeping Area

  • Designate a living space area where they can safely and comfortable settle in.
  • Puppy-proof the immediate area by removing any items that are potentially hazardous and anything you don’t want to risk being chewed on.
  • Provide them with a cosy sleeping area where they can enjoy some much-needed rest after a busy day of travelling.
  • Place some puppy-friendly toys in the area to keep them entertained.
  • Crate training has huge benefits, as the crate will become a safe place for your puppy at home and wherever you choose to take them. Our Jetpets crates are perfect for crate training, and they come in all sizes.

Happy Belly, Happy Puppy

If possible, find out from the rescue organisation or breeder what your puppy has been eating. That way you can try to purchase the same or similar diet. Sudden diet changes can cause tummy upsets.

If you want to change your puppy’s diet, make sure to do it gradually over a period of a week or so. Good nutrition is key to the healthy development of your new best mate.

Life is Better with Friends

An important step in your puppy’s early life and behavioural development is ensuring that you proactively socialise your puppy between the ages of 8 to 17 weeks.

  • Exposing your puppy to different environments will ensure they mature into a well-adjusted adult and are equipped to interact appropriately with other dogs, animals and people.
  • You can enrol them in puppy school classes, which are usually offered at veterinary clinics.
  • Speak to your local vet about your puppy’s vaccination requirements prior to attending puppy school.

Leaving Your Puppy Alone for the First Time


There will be times when you’ll have to leave your furbaby at home alone. Try your best to keep this process gradual and calm by leaving for short periods of time and rewarding them with treats and play time upon your return. By gradually increasing your time away, your puppy will learn that you will always come back and this will help prevent separation anxiety.

Keep your puppy pre-occupied while you are away by leaving a selection of toys for them to play with. Give them different toys on different occasions to keep things exciting and fresh. You can also take them on a walk before you leave, this will help to tire them out and encourage them to enjoy a snooze while you’re away.

Dr. Angus’s Tips for Settling Your Cat into Your New Home

 

tips for settling in your catAt Jetpets, we like to help you make the pet travel process as easy and stress-free as possible for you and your furbaby. However, it’s important to remember that the travel process goes beyond the pick up from the airport or transit lounge, your furbabies will still need some time to get used to their new home and the new sights, smells and sounds that come with it. This is especially true for cats, as they are creatures of comfort and can take longer to acclimatise when compared to their dog counterparts.

We’re very fortunate to have expert in-house vets at Jetpets and we’ve asked Dr. Angus for his advice and top tips when it comes to helping your cat settling into your new home.

 

Phase 1: ‘Safe Mode’

Cats are usually quite bonded to their home territory so tend not to appreciate the time, expense and effort that you’ve gone to in relocating them with you – not initially anyway… Once they leave their established home most cats will go in to ‘safe mode’ whereby they will ‘lay low’ and ‘sit tight’- as in they will retreat to the back of their travel crate and maintain a low body and head posture to try and remain as ‘invisible’ as possible; this is a natural self-protective response employed by cats. We should, however, mention that there is a small cohort of outliers among the cat population who are a bit more outgoing; these are the ‘confident’ cats who will be at the front of the crate looking for any attention they can get. Having said that; the following advice applies to all cats.

cat safe mode

Image: @exoticblume

On receiving your intrepid feline adventurer (or bag of nerves – whatever the case may be) on arrival either at the airport or if they are delivered to your doorstep the most important thing to remember is, no matter how much you want to give them a reassuring scratch around the ears,
do not under any circumstances open the crate in an uncontained area. A cat that escapes in an unfamiliar area, no matter how friendly/easy going/dog-like they are normally is very likely to bolt and may be lost forever.

 

Phase 2: Allocate a ‘Safe Room’

So, once you’ve got them to their new home; it’s best to allocate them their own room for starters – preferably one without hiding places behind heavy electrical devices like fridges and washing machines.

In this room you’ll need at least one good-sized litter tray filled with their preferred litter (if they have a preference) and at the opposite end of the room a bowl of clean water (preferably bottled water – some cats may not initially drink tap water that tastes ‘different’ due to chlorination, different pipes etc.) and a selection of their favourite food – we’re talking the expensive stuff here; prawns, salmon, venison – you’ve spent enough to cover a business class airfare on them so you may as well splash out on some business class tucker too. Your cat will of course reciprocate (OK, punish you) and expect you to eat beans on toast for a few weeks.

cat eating

Image: @exoticblume

Also, in their initial ‘safe room’ you’ll need a comfortable hiding place such as an igloo. You may be able to use the travel crate as this hiding place but first check that the Stay Dry mat hasn’t been soiled – turn it over to check for any tell-tale marks on the underside as it will, as given away by the name, be dry on top. If need be tip out the bedding from the crate and replace it with clean bedding.

Highly recommended for the ‘safe room’ is a Feliway plug-in diffuser, this will help indicate to your cat that this is a safe area and help them to settle/calm down more quickly.

It’s best to open the crate in the ‘safe room’ and let your cat come out of their own accord – most will within a few minutes but a few may need a little coaxing. Most cats will then carry out a ‘sweep’ checking for the presence of any other cats – in other words this is the first stage of establishing their new territory. They may vocalise while undertaking this sweep and may want to jump up onto any high surfaces such as cabinets, shelves etc. to get a better view of their surroundings.

Once they’ve established that the area is theirs and theirs alone then they will begin to relax and possibly even come and say hello to you (and check that you haven’t been cheating on them with any other cats during their absence…). Once you’ve reached this point you can leave them to relax further in their new bit territory by giving them some peace and quiet and time to have a bite to eat and use the tiger-latrine.

Phase 3: Time to Explore

cat hiding

Image: @exoticblume

Sooner or later there will be a request to have a look through the door and find out what’s in the next room. If you’re happy to, and provided all exits are closed, you can let them through and they will then repeat the process of checking that they have exclusive rights to this new bit of territory.

You can then progressively introduce them to as much of their new home as they feel comfortable being introduced to. But remember always ensure that all outside exits are closed!!

You do not want to let your cat out into the open until you are completely confident that they are well established in and bonded to their new indoor territory. There is no hard and fast rule as to how long this establishment or bonding takes (some people say two weeks others say up to six) as it very much depends on your cat’s individual temperament. Ultimately you need to be confident that they have established their indoor territory as a safe place where if they are outside and something scares them then then their automatic response is to retreat to the house.

Phase 4: Out and About (this only applies to cats who are not indoor-only)

Most cats will pretty quickly in the first couple of days after arrival in their new home begin to show an interest in the outside world and begin to ‘ask’ to go outside – it’s best to take a conservative approach to this and don’t give in to them too soon until you are comfortable that they will come back to the house rather than launch into an epic journey to try and return to their previous home.

When you do let them out for the first time this is best done under close supervision letting them explore in, preferably, an enclosed area and only at ground level few minutes or until they start looking to jump or climb before returning them inside. You can then repeat these supervised
outings for longer periods of time and always make sure that there is a clear way back into the house through an open door. Cats do not understand or respect roads and traffic so you always need to be aware of busy roads if they are nearby.

cat outdoors

Image: @exoticblume

A good time to let your cat out for the first time is prior to a meal. Initially you can take them back in and feed them and then once they’re more relaxed outside put their food out just inside the door and allow them to come in under their own steam. Once your cat has explored your
immediate garden and has chosen a ‘favourite spot’ where they are comfortable sitting and watching the world go by, and will come in for food when called, then you can at last consider your cat’s relocation a success.

But always remember with all cats that curiosity will often lead them further afield; this typically occurs during hours of darkness so it is recommended to keep cats indoors at night both for their own safety and to mitigate impacts on local bird and wildlife populations.

Six Benefits of a Pet-Friendly Workplace

Reflecting back on international ‘Take Your Dog to Work Day’ on the 21st of June just gone, we thought it’d be the purr-fect opportunity to discuss the six perks of having a pet-friendly workplace.

benefits of dog-friendly office

1. Lower Stress Levels

Whether you’re rushing to meet a deadline or preparing for an important meeting, high-pressure situations at work are inevitable and can leave you feeling strung out. And if you’re a parent to a furbaby, you’ll know there’s no better feeling than coming home after a long day and being welcomed by their adorable, happy faces.  But anecdotal evidence aside, scientific studies have also proven the stress-relieving advantages of having a furry sidekick at the workplace, fur real.

dog-friendly workplace

According to a 2012 study conducted by the Virginia Commonwealth University, employees who brought their dogs to work showed lower stress hormone levels when compared to those who didn’t. To further substantiate this finding, the group with dogs also showed significantly higher stress levels on days when the dogs weren’t around.

Having pets at work can help employees take a breather when they need to, whether it’s taking a few minutes to stroke the office cat or taking the dog for a quick walk around the block to let off steam and clear headspace.

2. More Happiness, Improved Morale

Who let the dogs in? We did! Furbaby Fridays are always a weekly highlight at Jetpets. Ned the attention-loving daschund, Billy the handsome groodle, Bambi the cheeky spoodle and Blume the adorable exotic long-haired kitten, are just a few of the many beloved furbabies that make Fridays at Jetpets that much better. From laughing at their silly antics to stealing a few cuddles, the office atmosphere is always more light-hearted and relaxed.

bambi at jetpets blume at jetpets

Images: @billyandbambioodles and @exoticblume

ghost at jetpets jetpets pet-friendly

Maria-Jose Enders, an expert in human and animal relationships at Open University, told the Business Insider “it’s definitely good for the work atmosphere to have a dog in the office, not only does your cortisol level drop when you stroke a dog; you also produce more of the hormone oxytocin, which makes you feel more relaxed and happy.”

Having wagging tails around the office has proven to boost morale and increase happiness levels amongst employees.

3. Boosts Productivity

While you might think that having an office full of goofy fluffballs can get distracting, a pet-friendly workplace can also help to improve productivity levels. The presence of our four-legged best friends can help diffuse tension and provide support when stress levels are high.

cat-friendly workplace

On long workdays where the temptation to zone out is lingering or you’re struggling to keep focused with so many tasks at bay, a few quick pats or a little cuddle for extra comfort is a quick and easy way to rejuvenate before jumping back into it.

4. Encourages Employee Interaction and Collaboration

Pets can also be an excellent icebreaker in the workplace, providing employees with an easy conversation starter. Whether it’s chatting about your pup’s favourite treats or training tips, employees may find more common ground to bond over when pets are present.

dog-friendly office jetpets

In turn, this can help employees to improve on their communication skills and facilitate deeper conversations, fostering a stronger team-work mentality. Encouraging collaboration and cooperation amongst employees across departments can significantly harmonise workplaces and create a more welcoming space.

5. Improved Mental and Physical Health

Going hand-in-hand with stress-relieving benefits, having pets in the workplace has also shown to reduce blood pressure and decrease anxiety.  This not only brings about a plethora of mental and physical health benefits for staff but can also help employers maintain a healthy staff retention rate and operational efficiency with less risk of “burn-outs” and sick days.

billy at jetpets

Plus, not only are office dogs or cats fun to play or cuddle with, they also provide the perfect motivator to get out of the office for a game of fetch in the park or a brisk walk to enjoy the fresh air.

6. Attracts Future Talent

Finally, the benefits to having a pet-friendly workplace isn’t just limited to employees themselves but also to the company’s recruitment efforts. With millennials choosing to wait longer before getting married, buying a house or having kids, it’s no surprise that many are opting to become parents to furbabies rather than “settling down”.

Numerous studies have shown that a dog-friendly office can work in favour of prospective employers, attracting talent pools that place significant value on being able to bring their favourite paw pal to work.

pet-friendly office

The Banfield Pet Hospital conducted their first ever Pet-Friendly Workplace PAWrometer study, surveying 1,006 employees and 200 Human Resources decision makers (HR DMs) from U.S. companies to explore the impact of pets in the workplace. 65% of job candidates asked about pet-friendly policies while 79% of HR DMs discuss their pet-friendly workplace policies when recruiting employees.

So, there’s your six benefits of having a pet-friendly workplace and we hope if it isn’t already, that your workplace will also open their doors to four-legged friends and discover the bountiful advantages that come with them.