Kerrie Josefovsky walks her Australian Shepherd, Ronnie, near her South Park neighborhood home. Staff photo / Sarah Franks
Photo: Sarah Franks
Photo: Sarah Franks

Coronavirus: Pets are doing their best to keep our spirits up

Pets deserve some major credit during this time of at-home solitude.

People everywhere are getting to spend more time than ever with their fur children. People might be cooped up for the time being and find themselves getting stir crazy, but many are sharing how happy their pets have been now that their favorite humans are home all day.

Kerrie Josefovsky teaches 6th, 7th and 8th grade at the St. Peter School in Huber Heights and said her Australian Shepherd, Ronnie, has been a life saver now that Josefovsky teaches from home.

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“He’s been amazing to have at home,” Josefovsky said. “I think he feels like it’s summer because I’m home every day. He just gets to hang out with me all day and he doesn’t understand why we can’t play constantly.”

Recording lesson videos for her students, Ronnie and Josefovsky’s cat, Cordero, have made numerous appearances and even star in some videos.

Josefovsky said taking Ronnie on two long walks a day has been important while working from home because it breaks up her day with structure, as if she were still teaching at school.

Guy Fragmin, owner of 416 Diner in the Oregon District, said if there is a positive in any of this, it’s the constant parade of pups in the district.

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“The good news is that we’re getting to see an awful lot of puppies walking by,” Fragmin said. “Literally, people are out walking their dogs. We’ve met a lot of new neighborhood pups.”

416 Diner is offering carryout through their walk-up window, Uber Eats, Door Dash and Grub Hub.

In the South Park neighborhood of Dayton dog walkers are everywhere.

“I’m taking a lot of different routes because I now have the time and so we’re seeing all sorts of dogs that we didn’t even know lived in South Park,” Josefovsky said. “I’ve seen more dogs out than I ever have in South Park.”

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Pet owners say that it is almost as if in this time of uncertainty pets understand their humans need more companionship than normal — and most pets are more than happy to oblige.

“It’s exciting to see people getting out and getting active with their animals when they might not have done so as much before,” Josefovsky said. “He’s getting like two walks a day now where he was maybe getting one a day, before.”

“We’re all stuck inside, we all just want to get fresh air and get out and I think walking your dog is one of the best ways to do that right now,” Josefovsky said. “It’s been incredibly stressful some days. … I think it helps with the loneliness. I talk to him like he’s a person so it gives me somebody to think about other than myself.”

Lurking in the future, however, is the prospect that this crazy time will not go on forever. Humans may be looking forward to a return to normal life; pets might not.

“He’s (Ronnie) going to be highly confused and highly upset when I go back to teaching,” Josefovsky said.

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