Pets play an important role in the home and can be wonderful companions to kids, adults and seniors. The bond that forms between a family and their pet is sometimes difficult for non pet owners to understand, but for all of us who have or have had a pet in our home, we know the joy and pleasure these faithful companions can bring.
If you are like millions of animal owners nationwide, your pet is an important member of your household. Around 63 percent of all U.S. households (71.1 million) are pet owners, and more than half of these households have more than one animal. Owning and caring for a family pet doesn't have to be a difficult or burdensome experience.
A pet is an animal kept for companionship and enjoyment or a household animal, as opposed to wild animals or to livestock, laboratory animals, working animals or sport animals, which are kept for economic or productive reasons. The most popular pets are noted for their loyal or playful characteristics, for their attractive appearance, or for their song.
Pets also generally seem to provide their owners with non-trivial health benefits. Keeping pets has been shown to help relieve stress to those who like having animals around. There is now a medically-approved class of "therapy animals," mostly dogs, that are brought to visit confined humans. Walking a dog can provide both the owner and the dog with exercise, fresh air, and social interaction.
One thing to remember, most pets live over 5 years. If you are looking for a pet for only a few years, try adopting an older pet from a local animal shelter, animal rescue or pet recovery facility. Kittens and cats do not need as much attention as dogs and puppies. But, they have to be fed, bathed, brushed, socialized and played with on a regular basis, but again not as much as dogs. Getting any type of pet should be thought out very carefully, weigh the pros and cons and decide if now is the time to get a pet.