Covid19 Editorial

What Does “Stay at Home” Mean for You and Your Pets?

Navigating the coronavirus outbreak. Can you go out with your pet if you live in Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana?

March 23, 2020

Since Sunday afternoon the governors of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana have issued “Stay at Home” orders for the residents of their respective states. But what does that really mean for you and your pets? CincyPet is here to help decipher the ins and outs of staying in during the ever-evolving coronavirus outbreak.


Ohio’s order, announced by Governor Mike DeWine and signed by the Ohio Director of Health, Dr. Amy Acton was issued on Sunday. It takes effect at 11:59 p.m. Monday, March 23 and is effective through Monday, April 6 at 11:59 p.m., pending review. You can continue to take your pets to the vet and can go out to get medical supplies or food for them. You will want to check with your veterinary provider as many vets have changed how they are dealing with patients during the outbreak. Elective surgeries have been discontinued due to the need to limit the use of protective medical equipment as there is currently a shortage of supplies. Many veterinary practices have implemented curbside drop-off to limit the potential for contact between pet parents and staff. Call your vet or check out their website or Facebook to see if they have implemented any specific procedures.

You may continue to go out to care for pets in other households or to transport pets for others as allowed by the order. So, if you are a pet sitter or caregiver for someone else’s pets, it is okay to continue providing this essential service for those who need it.

Individuals are permitted to engage in outdoor activity, but you must comply with the social distancing requirements of keeping a minimum of six feet between you and others not part of your family or immediate household. You may continue to go outdoors to go to public parks and open recreation areas, so you should be able to go to dog parks provided they remain open and you follow social distancing protocols.

Veterinary care and other healthcare provided to animals are considered to be essential, so there is no requirement for these businesses to close, although check with your providers. Pet supplies are also considered essential businesses so companies making pet supplies and selling pet supplies aren’t required to close. Additionally, any “business that provides food, shelter, and other necessities of life for animals, including animal shelters, rescues, shelters, kennels, and adoption facilities” are considered essential and do not need to close, although many shelters have closed to the general public. The animals are still being cared for by staff and other key volunteers.

  • SPCA Cincinnati is closed until further notice and has been closed since March 15. The Northside location is open by appointment only for owners looking to redeem their stray pet.
  • Save the Animals Foundation has temporarily suspended cat adoptions until further notice. Dog adoptions are currently by appointment only; no walk-ins allowed.
  • The Scratching Post is closed until at least April 4.
  • Ohio Alleycat Resource (OAR) is continuing adoptions by appointment only. Their spay/neuter clinic is closed until further notice.
  • UCAN is closed until further notice in order to help preserve the supply of protective medical equipment.
  • League for Animal Welfare in Batavia is closed to the public as of Tuesday, March 24. Their on-site vet will remain open for wellness and routine care, no elective surgery.
  • Clermont Animal Care Humane Society is having a clear-the-shelter Foster/Adopt-a-Thon until Midnight, Monday, March 23.
  • Ohio Pet Sanctuary is currently closed and all animals have been moved into foster care.
  • All Dogs Come from Heaven in Amelia is open for adoptions by appointment only.
  • Angel’s Rest Animal Society is closed to the public until further notice.
  • The Humane Association of Warren County is closed to the public. If you have lost a pet, call the shelter at (513) 695-1176. If you see a stray, please call (513) 695-1352. If no one answers, follow the prompts.
  • Brown County Humane Society remains open but has made some changes to their adoption procedures. They are doing outside meet and greets while practicing social distancing.
  • Animal Adoption Foundation in Hamilton is closed to the public. They are still doing adoptions by appointment only. Intakes of spayed or neutered animals only are being done by appointment only.
  • Animal Friends Humane Society in Hamilton is closed for adoptions. If you find a sick or injured animal you can still drop off or if you are redeeming your lost pet you can still do both by appointment.
  • PAWS Adoption Center in Monroe is open for adoptions by appointment only.
  • SISCA in Centerville has moved to adoptions by appointment only as they still have many animals in their care.


On Sunday, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear issued a mandate for non-essential (life-sustaining) retail business to close that takes effect as of 8:00 p.m. Monday, March 23. As of Monday, March 23, Gov. Beshear also issued an executive order to cease all elective medical procedures. While Kentucky is not under a “Stay at Home” order like Ohio, they are urged to be “healthy at home” instead.


Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb issued a “Stay at Home” order that is effective March 25 through April 7. The language of Indiana’s order pretty much mirrors that of Ohio’s “Stay at Home” order. You’re still allowed to go out to get essentials, medical appointments (including veterinary), and can walk your dog or go to the park, just make sure to take the appropriate social distancing measures.

Nationwide, PetSmart has suspended all of their in-store adoption events but their in-store adoption centers remain open. Additionally, they’ve reduced their store hours, added curbisde pickup, and their grooming and training services are closed through May 4. Petco has also reduced store hours and added curbside pickup; their grooming remains open. PetPeople has reduced their store hours. They also offer curbside pick up and same-day delivery. Pet Supplies Plus has reduced hours and is offering curbside pickup. EarthWise Pet at Harper’s Point has slightly reduced their hours and closed their self-wash. They offer delivery and curbside pickup. They are also limiting the number of patrons in the store at one time. EartWise Pet Liberty is open but their grooming and self-wash are closed. The also are open to seniors and at-risk customers from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. daily. They offer online ordering and delivery. PetWants stores all offer delivery of their food. Some of the stores are closed and some remain open, so check with your individual store. Argos continues to offer delivery. You can also call future orders in for curbside pickup at both the Madeira and East Walnut Hills locations.

As you can see, there are many rescue organizations and shelters that are continuing with their adoption efforts even though they aren’t holding adoption events or have facilities open to the public for the time being. They also continue to need fosters, supplies, and donations, so please consider donating to your favorite shelter, rescue, or pet charity at this time if you can. If you are working from home or just sheltering in place, now is the perfect time to foster or adopt a new pet because it will help ease them into your home by having you there with them for the first few weeks.

As the coronavirus outbreak is an ever-evolving situation, please check with individual businesses or organizations for their current status. We will try to provide updates on our website on our special page:

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