Unintended Consequences

In the book Freakonomics, much of the discussion is centered around the economic principle of unintended consequences. For example, in Mexico City there was a pollution problem – too many people driving too many cars. So they implemented a system where cars could only drive on certain days, depending on their license plates. The unintended consequence was that people who needed to drive every day bought a second car. And because people started needing a second car, instead of buying a newer (more efficient, cleaner) car, they bought two older cars. The ultimate effect – more pollution, not less.

It goes without saying and no explanation is needed, that the past year has been difficult for everyone. At NAAH, we look to this new year with hope and excitement. The past year has caused a few unintended consequences in regards to pet health and pet care. One positive is that pet adoption, sales and rescues have been at all time high. As people seek out socialization and are at home more, pets are being brought into American households at an ever-increasing rate. One consequence that may not be so joyful is that COVID-19 has caused pets to have an increase in anxiety. When stay at home orders were put in place and people were home more, pets may have initially been happier. Once they got used to that and owners headed back to work, separation anxiety developed. Cats on the other hand, enjoy the time during the day when they are alone. So when their owners began to be home or have kids who disrupt the cat’s normal quiet time, they can become stressed.

From implementing telemedicine to navigating curbside service and an increase in phone calls, this year has challenged our whole team. We pride ourselves in going above and beyond when educating our clients about their pet’s health. With the rise in pet ownership comes an increased demand for us as a practice to continue to hold steady to the level of care that our clients expect and their pets deserve. Even with the increase in pets, we aim to prevent the unintended consequence of less informed clients with less than cared for pets. Our team stands ready to face the challenges ahead of us. We look forward to the new year and to continue to make a difference in your pet’s life!

Dr. Thompson

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