Back

Get started

Customized By You

Design your pet’s plan in less than 60 seconds.

Respite care for pet parents

Q: John is a friend whose dog has a chronic medical condition that requires lots of attention. John has pulled back from friends and his usual activities to care for his dog, whom he adores. What can I do to help John through this challenge?

A: It’s important to support our friends who are caring for their family members, whether human or pet. Caregivers can feel isolated, overwhelmed and frightened.

Be specific when you offer help. For example, suggest to John that you join him for appointments to provide an extra set of ears, shop for groceries, run errands, shovel snow or mow his lawn.

When John and his dog have a long appointment with the veterinarian, take him dinner so he won’t have to cook when he’s tired.

Help John get some respite by offering to take over some of his dog’s care. Tell him you’ll show up one evening each week to walk his dog and give medications, so he can spend time with his other friends and family.

Most of all, give John the gift of your time and emotional support. Write a note on a greeting card and pop it in the mail. Invite him out for coffee or a meal. Listen more than you speak. Don’t offer advice unless he asks for it. This is a crucial time in John’s life, and you can help him most just by being present.


Lee Pickett, V.M.D. practices companion animal medicine. Contact her at askdrlee@insurefigo.com

Q: My friend’s cat and...

Q: I adopted my...

Q: Sassy, my 8-year-...

More From Figo Blog

Dogs have dreams too—they love to travel and...

When one of our beloved pets becomes ill or...

Swimming is a phenomenal way to exercise and...

Scarf’d: Go Bananas! Pet Ice Cream Sandwiches | Figo Pet Insurance

Ice cream is our legit favorite summer treat...

Pet Professionals: Interview With Kristen Levine Pet Blogger | Figo Pet Insurance

We recently had the opportunity to interview...

Sometimes, we think of cats as needing less...

How To Teach Your Puppy To Ride In A Car | Figo Pet Insurance

Riding safely in a car can be a great way, not...

Thanksgiving and pets: Holiday do's and don’ts

Thanksgiving is a day of family, fun, and...

HELP