Monday, January 2, 2012
FIRST REGULAR DAY OF THE YEAR
Today is the first regular day of the year for me. OK, I know that technically it's a holiday for a lot of people since 2012 arrived over the weekend but it's back to normal (whatever that is) in this household.
Buddy's been taken care of and Annie is still sleeping in so I thought it a good time to get some thoughts out there.
In reviewing the previous year, I've learned the following about caring for my babies. It's not easy and it takes a whole lot of dedication and patience, patience, patience! Oh, and did I mention that it takes patience? The bottom line is pets aren't easy to work with, in fact I bet in some ways it's harder than taking care of children. I'm not an expert on the care of children because the ones I've cared for have all gone home to their parents at the end of the day.
I would say the key to handling pets and their illnesses is to keep to a schedule. Once Buddy needed IV and various medicines it helped to write it down and check it off as it was done. Tedious I know but very effective when you have a million things to remember. Keeping a list puts it in black and white and takes the onus of remembering whether or not you completed the task off your mind.
When I began the home feeding process for Annie it helped immensely to have a list. Into Word I went to devise a one-page letter-sized spreadsheet containing four grids with the following information:
Time of day,
Day of the week,
Additional items such as health powder, cranberry juice,
and a space under each day for me to check off the item once it was completed.
Then I copied the page to a second spreadsheet and adapted it for Buddy by removing the items that did not pertain to his daily routine, adding his medicines and IV instead.
On days where things get out of hand, this system is invaluable. I highly suggest doing this as either a temporary measure (until your routine is set) or permanently (to eliminate the pressure of having to remember what you've done). Anyone out there taking care of a pet should give this a try. Very simple stuff but a very powerful tool. It definitely will make life easier.