Pandemic pets: Almaguin sees some residents adding a 'fur baby' during COVID-19

·2 min read

Some regions have seen a spike in pet adoptions during the pandemic, but the Almaguin Pet Rescue said its adoption numbers were average.

“We are running about the same numbers in adoptions — we average around 100 adopted pets per year,” said the organization over Facebook. “We did have more people looking for kittens than usual this year.”

Magnetawan resident Marcia Messing Tymochko said that she adopted a kitten during the pandemic, and said that taking the kitten to the vet was different due to COVID-19.

“When you arrive with your pet, you park at a space with a number on it, then you phone them, and they come out and take your pet inside while you wait in the car,” said Tymochko. “Then when exams are done, they bring your pet back to the car — it’s a very safe way.”

There was a bit of a mix-up when it came to Tymochko’s kitten.

“So, this is funny — when I got my kitten, I thought I had adopted a little girl and didn’t check,” said Tymochko. “The vet laughed at me when she came out and said, ‘your little girl is a little boy!’ So, I changed the name from Lilly to Chilly.”

In Dunchurch, Barb Boulter and her husband, Rick, decided they were ready to adopt a puppy.

“We had been searching for a few months and soon discovered that there was a huge demand for adopting given that everyone had been staying home more than ever,” said Barb Boulter. “Each day, I would surf the web and after patiently looking we found a website, and instantly fell in love with Nukka.”

According to Boulter, Nukka is a German shepherd, Akita and Husky cross from northern Manitoba. They adopted her in August at four months old.

Now, Nukka is seven months old, weighs 55 pounds, and has passed puppy class with “flying colours.”

This pandemic puppy has given the retired Boulters a new lease on life during this crazy year.

“Nukka has eliminated stress and loneliness, and given us a purpose every day,” said Boulter. “She gets us out walking and keeping (us) more active.”

“She has rocked our world.”

Sarah Cooke’s reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative.

Sarah Cooke, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Parry Sound North Star