Ruth and Robert Turner with their new cats Buddy and Tosh, April 6 2020
Ruth and Robert Turner with their new cats Buddy and Tosh, April 6 2020

Increased pet adoptions silver lining to COVID-19

ONE month ago, an animal rescue group was desperate for foster carers and pet adoptions, but that’s all changed since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Gladstone Animal Rescue Group president Judy Whicker said more than 50 dogs and 40 cats have been adopted in the past month.

Ms Whicker thinks the surge in pet adoptions is a result of people having more time to look after a pet in self-isolation.

“We had over 105 cats and kittens a month ago, and now we’re down to about 70, which is just great,” Ms Whicker said.

“I was screaming for more foster carers but now we’ve had about seven people that have said ‘hey we would like to foster a dog’.”

But it’s not just Gladstone, Ms Whicker said pet adoptions has seen an increase around the world.

“The virus is a dreadful thing but it has certainly brought people that want to take care of the animals,” she said.

Married couple Robert and Ruth Turner went in to adopt a cat last Saturday and came out with two – Buddy and Tosh.

The pair had plans to travel in June but were forced to cancel after international travel was banned.

Mr Turner said the surge in pet adoptions was the silver lining to the pandemic. He said the self-isolation period has allowed people to do things they enjoy or were too busy to do beforehand.

“We always wanted to get another cat after our last one but we were too busy travelling,” Mr Turner said.

Mrs Turner added: “Now that we can’t go we thought it was a good time to get a cat so we could settle them in before we can travel again.”



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