Taking care of pets – We humans, love animals, especially domestic pets. We just do. They look so cute and we love to cuddle them. Most of all, we naturally love their company and looking after them. It’s a win-win situation for everyone including the animal. They say people who have a pet are happier people and I can certainly believe that. The amount of affection a dog gives is just huge. A cat, sitting on a lap, is a moment of great comfort. Or a hamster on a wheel. OK, less emotion, but fun to see. Whatever the pet, we love looking after them and the pleasure they give back. This became so important during the last two years as we all spent more and more time indoors, often with no other human company. Then more and more people wanted pets and demand became huge. A lot of these new pet owners had never had an animal before and that has implications for everyone, especially the animal. In this Q+A with an Amsterdam vet, we want to look more at the important area of taking care of pets.
So many more people are now pet owners. Do they realise all the responsibility, care and costs that come with pet ownership? Some do and some might be surprised is the other answer. The best person to know what is really going on is a vet. So we got in touch with Sjoerd, the owner of centrally located Dierenkliniek De Wetering, a short walk from Leidseplein. During their many years of pet care, Sjoerd and the team have seen every kind of pet and problems pets can have. So we took our questions about pets to him and his insights are very revealing.
q1. Sjoerd, you and the team worked through the covid time. How important did pets become to their owners?
We see that pets became increasingly more important to their owners. More and more people own a pet, and no matter what species, pets become part of the family. For many who live alone, having a pet helped to reduce the feeling of loneliness. For families too, the pet was a way to relax any tensions.
q2. Many people bought or adopted animals during the lockdowns. How did that work out for them and the animals?
Sadly, we hear that shelters are now receiving more and more ‘corona animals’. It could be that the owners have no time for them anymore. However, this is not something we recognise in our practice. We always provide a lot of information about the right care. We see that most owners are willing to follow our advice to give the best care and keep their pets happy and healthy. On the flip side, we hear that many people are adopting animals from shelters and that is very good news.
q3. We all know how great it is to have a pet. What should new pet owners really know about this responsibility?
A pet is not a toy, but a living creature. So, make sure to be informed about the right care, and make sure you will have enough time now and, in the future, to take good care. And have pet insurance or piggy bank for your pet in case of accident or illness. Children can form long-term and caring relationships with their pets. This has many benefits for everyone.
q4. What changes have you noticed in the last years?
People want to spend more money on their pets, and sometimes we must tell an owner that spending more money on diagnostics, for example, is not going to make a difference. Some owners want a blood test, convinced that all problems can be found after such a test. However, we know that sometimes an ultrasound will give much more information. Furthermore, it is getting much harder to find a vet. With the increased number of pets in The Netherlands, many vets do not take new clients. Unfortunately, we have applied client stop as well. However, if you as a new client call after 11 AM and we have still space, you can make an appointment for the same day. Once you are a client in our clinic, we will always be able to see you, but please call before 11 AM once subscribed! We want to help!
q5. Moving forward, in what ways can we all help to improve the lives of pets?
Be informed! Get information before you get a pet. What does it need, and am I as an owner, capable of providing those needs? And use the suitable sources, make sure if you gather information online that the website is from an official instance like the LICG in The Netherlands or e.g., a veterinary clinic website.
Thank you, Sjoerd for these interesting insights about Taking Care of Pets. Pets are so important to all their owners!
Dierenkliniek de Wetering Website
Address: Weteringschans 141, 1017 SE Amsterdam
+Tel: 020 622 1884
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