The World Reset Series–2 People, 2 Dogs, and Lockdown

Walle and Zazu

Walle and Zazu, courtesy of Anji Rajbhandari (look at those smiles!)

What a difference a year makes. In 2019, around this time, I discovered the YouTube channel Zazu Talks. I had just given Sobaka, a German shorthair pointer up for adoption after fostering him for a year and a half so I needed a GSP fix which led me to YouTube. The first episode I saw was when Anji baked pumpkin cookies for the two dogs. The bouncy world music, bright kitchen, and happy dogs caused me to click on the subscribe button and then experience delightful videos each day. And then, close to a year later, the lockdown occurred.

I’m including Anji Rajbhandari in this series because, when I’m feeling particularly stressed, I watch Zazu and Walle going about their doggy daily life and this calms my nerves. Call it dog therapy via YouTube. So, with no further wait, welcome to Walle’s and Zazu’s days in lockdown 2020. Oh, yes, and the dogs share the lockdown with Anji and her husband (who also appears in the videos), Abhishek Pradhan.

Zazu and Walle

The logo for the YouTube channel Zazu Talks

How many weeks have you been in lockdown?

Anji Rajbhandari –Over 6 weeks. Bay Area, California lockdown started on March 18, 2020

You adapted your YouTube channel to fit the quarantine situation and you made these changes quickly and creatively. Where do you come up with your unique ideas for the dogs?

AR–We are trying to make the most out of our current quarantine situation. Since I and my husband were home all days with the dogs, we thought why not share our daily activities with people around the world. It wasn’t very hard to come up with new content every day, we love spending time with our dogs and it was just a matter of catching the right moments to film throughout the day. In the beginning, it was difficult to get used to the new normal but creating these videos every day has been therapeutic to me.

How are you keeping your mind, body, and spirit healthy during this particular lockdown?

AR–We really enjoy the outdoors so we try to hike every day with both our dogs. That keeps our mind, body, and spirit healthy. We have also been cooking at home a lot lately and enjoy spending time together at a slower pace than before.

What are some of the challenges of working from home and staying in isolation with two large dogs (and one of the dogs being high-energy?)

AR–We spend 2 hours every day exercising the dogs; therefore, the lockdown has not been a big change for us. Thankfully, in California the shelter in place restrictions still allows us to go outdoors and exercise. The only challenge is that since we are home every day and all day, both our dogs Zazu and Walle think they can go on walks whenever they ask for it.

What are the benefits of spending time in lockdown with your dogs?

AR–The lockdown has been stressful and being home all the time has driven me crazy sometimes. But both our dogs have been great stress relievers. Having them around automatically calms the tension in the house and they keep us busy and entertained.

What skills and personality traits work well for you during the lockdown?

AR–I have always enjoyed working from home but it is much clearer to me that I work for efficiently when I am passionate about something. Content creation has been my passion and I am more focused than ever to improve on my skills now.

What daily practices have you been able to keep up with?

AR–We have been able to take some time out every day to meditate, even if it is for 5 minutes. It brings a lot of clarity to our day.

Have you been able to keep Walle and Zazu on the raw diet for the duration of the lockdown?

AR–In the beginning when the lockdown was just announced it was hard to find the raw food that we prepared and gave to the dogs. Therefore, we did buy some kibble for backup, but now that the grocery’s supply chain has adapted to the demand, I am able to find most of their food without any problems.

What practices do you have in place to keep yourself virus-free?

AR–We leave our shoes outside the house and make sure to always wash our hands every time we enter our home. The things we bring into our home are always wiped by a disinfectant and the dog’s paws are wiped with warm water after any outdoor activity. We are also practicing social distancing with our family and friends and wear a mask every time we leave the house for essential activities.

What do you feel will be the greatest asset that you gained during the lockdown (after it ends)?

AR–My health will be the greatest asset gained from this lockdown. I feel most people will take this for granted after the lockdown is over and people return to their daily lives. I am thankful to all the frontline workers who have made it possible.