Zoom Meetings Get a Puppy Makeover at Paz Veterinary

And pups get some socialization in the process

Kate Bannon (on left) (Photos courtesy of Kate Bannon)

Zoom meetings quickly went from helpful work-from-home and keep-up-with friends tool to a facilitator of awkward work exchanges and forced faux-socialization. Now imagine a Zoom call that wasn’t filled with the eye rolls that accompany not un-muting yourself for the millionth time and instead filled with puppies.

Stay-at-home orders and social distancing have created an uptick in dog adoptions. If you’re going to be home all the time, why not have a furry pal to hang out with? But our new furry pals need socialization of their own, like the kind of “paw-ties” Paz Veterinary hosts.

Kate Bannon has been running puppy socialization classes over Zoom at Paz’s North and East locations since May. Dog owners drop their pups off before class and then watch from a safe distance via Zoom as Bannon teaches the class backgrounded by bounding, running, and frolicing furballs. Observing one recent class remote, I felt like I was watching a Ted Talk that included adorable and excited pups running around on the stage.

The dogs come to class excited to see four-legged friends and other people in a time where they aren’t getting much time away from their human. Maybe a touch overexcited; Bannon says, “I’m giving training advice, and maybe half of them are listening to it.” Bannon, with airpods on, fields questions submitted in a survey before the class or live from the chatroom.

Seeing each dog’s personality on screen is the kind of wholesome content we could all use right now. One pup named Antonio was a bit shy but an enthusiastic good boy. Bannon has seen dogs grow and come out of their shells during the classes. “There was this one puppy, Kevin. Kevin was really shy and scared and just grew. And he was definitely a food hound,” Bannon says.

Bannon was unsure if owners would enjoy watching their dogs be trained over Zoom since, in the before times, they’d be in the classroom learning and reinforcing socialization techniques alongside their dogs. But she says owners have relished the opportunity to keep their dogs’ social calendar filled. “Most people are really excited just seeing their puppy having fun.”

Paz will be doing the Zoom classes for the foreseeable future. You can contact them by giving them a call or emailing them at [email protected].

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Paz, Kate Bannon, COVID-19, Zoom

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