Puppy Popularity During Quarantine


Jane Naylor and Delaney Sandner

When the COVID-19 quarantine began in mid-March of last year, many families were confined in their houses with not much to do and nowhere to go. Inevitably, after a few months, family members became tired of looking at each other in their pajamas all day, and a sense of loneliness and uncertainty set in.  A noticeable theme over the quarantine months is the number of Scituate families who have adopted puppies as a way to cope with the pandemic. What better way to cure the boredom, stress, and anxiety of a growing global pandemic than getting a new puppy?

Maddy von Freymann, a junior at SHS, recently adopted a new puppy.  She says her mom was the “main advocate” for getting a puppy. “She argued that being physically in school for only two days would allow for training and giving the puppy adequate attention,” said von Freymann.  Since the family already had a dog, the new puppy serves as a great playmate and companion. During a time when it’s so easy to be lazy, von Freymann says the puppy keeps her active and engaged. She “100% would recommend” other families welcome a new small member to their family while advocating for the adoption of rescue dogs. Puppies are known to be effective stress relievers, which everyone could benefit from during a certainly stressful time in society.

Dr. Siobhan Burke from the Driftway Animal Hospital in Scituate also noticed a drastic increase in puppy adoptions. Burke recognizes the difficult days of the pandemic and agrees that getting a puppy over quarantine can heal some of the negative effects of the isolation period. With more people working from home, Burke said people are “looking for the companionship of a pet.”  With all this empty time to fill, people are looking for something fresh and new to fill the void. People need something to fill their “boredom” and a puppy does just that. 

However, Burke said she does “worry about the possibility of increased incidences of separation anxiety that may occur when and if people start going back in to work or traveling again.” Society is so abnormal because of the pandemic that most families wouldn’t consider this issue before getting a puppy; however, separation anxiety to pets is very serious. This issue is among the many new factors that families need to consider while adopting puppies during a pandemic, which they didn’t need to think about before. 

Caroline Mahoney is a junior at SHS, and in November, her family adopted a Mini-Australian Shepherd puppy named “Teddy.” Caroline said the quarantine months “affected everyone’s mental health,” as there were limited social interactions between friends and family. She remarked that getting a dog  “made everyone happier.” 

To these Scituate families and many others around the United States, the perfect way to alleviate the stress, anxiety, and loneliness of quarantine was to adopt a new puppy. Dogs can bring happiness to life, which has definitely proven to be true over the strenuous and challenging past few months.