May 05 2016

It's National Pet Week!

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National Pet Week is a week dedicated to celebrating the pets that enrich our lives so greatly each day. For many people, our pets are a central part of our lives, and add so much vivacity and affection to our lives. Our pets are always there for us, and they generally don’t ask for much in return, besides a warm place to sleep, food, water and shelter. And the occasional belly rub. Our pets can be our companions, confidants, sources of entertainment and activity, and our protectors.

National Pet Week is an opportunity for us to be reminded of and celebrate the deep bonds that exist between ourselves and our pets, as we often tend to take the comforting presence of our pets for granted. It is a time to encourage pet owners to be confident that they are and can continue to provide the best care for their pets, including everything they need to live long, happy and healthy lives.

As a pet owner, take a few moments to think about the following pillars that are important aspects of pet ownership. As much as having a pet is largely in part about adding love and companionship to our lives, it also has significant responsibilities tied to it that we must remember and uphold.

Commitment– adopting a pet is a big, and a serious commitment. By doing so, you are asserting that you will do everything you can to provide a good home and life for your pet, for their whole lives. Things may happen that can change circumstances, but your initial mindset should be that by adopting an animal into your home, you are promising them a lifetime of love and care. Make sure that you think about the type of pet you want to adopt, that they are suitable for your capabilities and lifestyle. You are also committing to provide proper training, socialization, ongoing exercise and mental stimulation for your pet.

Investment– it is important that pet ownership does require both financial investment, as well as an investment of your time. Recognize that pets do cost money to provide food, healthcare and toys, accessories, and entertainment for.  Part of keeping your pet healthy involves routine checkups with your vet, not only reactionary visits when your pet is visibly sick. Pets also require you to invest a good amount of time in them; not only initially for training and socialization, but also time on a daily basis to connect and bond with your dog, and provide daily exercise and mental stimulation.

Compliance– you are required to follow by-laws in your area about cleaning up after your pet, and where pets are allowed to go, especially freely. Adopting a dog means you are aware of the rules in your area around pets, and agree to abide by those rules for the good of everyone.

Identification– you are responsible, as a pet owner, to make sure your pet is properly registered and identified, either by a collar and tags, or microchipping. This helps ensure that in the event your pet is separated from you, they are able to be easily identified and reunited with you.

Preparation– as a pet owner, you need to be prepared and prepare your pet for emergency and disaster situations. When making preparations, make sure to count your pet as a member of the family and prepare for them the same way you do the rest of the family.

So this week, take some extra time to not only but your pet a new treat or take them on an adventure, but to also reaffirm the commitment you made when you adopted them. Taking the time to celebrate the bond you have with your pet and the impact they have on your everyday life will contribute to both of you maintaining a long and loving relationship.

LifeLearn Team | Lifelearn News