Dog with Separation Anxiety Finds Comfort in Helping Her Owner Raise Affectionate Kittens

Daisy the dog feels calmer about spending time at home without her owner now that she has two cute kittens to look after

anxious dog
Photo: Courtesy of the ASPCA

Daisy the dog doesn't have to worry about being home alone anymore.

Before the arrival of two kittens, Daisy — an 8-year-old pit bull mix living in New York City — often experienced separation anxiety when her owner Rosemarie T. left the house.

"Four years ago, I came home and noticed that Daisy was trembling and trying to hide. Something must have really scared her, and since then, she doesn't like to be home alone. She suffers from separation anxiety," Rosemarie tells PEOPLE about the dog, who she adopted from Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC). "I consulted her veterinarian and have been able to treat Daisy with medication. She no longer trembles but doesn't like to come back inside after I walk her in the morning. She thinks I'm going to leave her and will sometimes try to block the door. "

Rosemarie's solo efforts to safely ease her loving pooch's separation anxiety have helped Daisy over the years, but the animal lover still decided to recruit some adorable little assistants.

Through her volunteer role at the ASPCA Adoption Center in New York City, Rosemarie met Hummus and Honey — two one-month-old kittens found in the Bronx without their mother — and decided to foster the pair.

"I've always been an animal lover, especially of cats and kittens — and have been fostering for years now," Rosemarie, who has fostered 31 kittens since 2012, says of her choice to welcome the kittens. "I knew that Daisy loves being a momma to them."

In the past Daisy, has quickly warmed to the kittens that Rosemarie has brought home to foster, and it was no different with Hummus and Honey.

anxious dog
Courtesy of the ASPCA

"At first, the kittens were unsure about Daisy, but they took to each other very quickly. I kept them separate until the kittens felt comfortable. About two days later, they were in bed with Daisy, letting her clean them, cuddling, and climbing on her," Daisy's mom says.

The trio of pets formed such a sweet bond that Rosemarie decided to adopt Hummus and Honey and renamed the duo Tulip and Sparkles.

"I adopted the kittens because of the fun way they interacted with Daisy," Rosemarie says.

"I think Daisy always wanted to be a mommy, and she loves kittens. They often sleep and play together, and Tulip especially has a calming effect on Daisy," she adds.

Tulip's calming effect on Daisy means the canine experiences less anxiety when Rosemarie leaves the house, which gives everyone more peace of mind.

"When I'm getting ready to leave the apartment, Tulip lies down on Daisy's bed, and then Daisy joins her. When Daisy comes back from a walk, Tulip comes into the hallway to greet her and then follows her inside. She literally helps Daisy walk back into the apartment," Rosemarie says of the pair.

anxious dog
Courtesy of the ASPCA

She hopes that Daisy's connection to the kittens inspires others to try fostering, so animal lovers can experience the perks of the good deed themselves.

According to Gemma Smith, the administrative manager at the ASPCA Kitten Nursery in New York City, the small act of fostering can be life-changing for so many animals.

"When you become a temporary foster caregiver, you have the chance to single-handedly change an animal's life for the better. Keep an open mind, as animals need foster care for many reasons; they may be ready for adoption or not quite yet due to their individual needs. The time spent in a home environment is beneficial for the animals and an equally valuable experience for the foster caregiver," Smith says.

For those interested in learning more about fostering kittens, visit the ASPCA's website.

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