National Pet Week Observed

The event, taking place from May 7-13, is a celebration of household cats and other animals.

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As a result of their overall contribution to humans quality of life, May 7-13 has been designated as National Pet Week to recognize cats and other treasured family members who happen to be animals.

More and more people find pets are good for their health and for the health of their families, according to a study by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association. The study showed that 63 percent of all U.S. households own a pet, the highest number ever.

Among their benefits, pets can help families relax, aid in reducing loneliness and depression, and provide companionship.

And owning pets can also have a broad effect on youngsters. Studies show children who live with one or more companion animals develop secure feelings toward them, which ultimately can contribute to positive developmental growth.

By becoming responsible for a pet, a child can elevate his or her sense of achievement, said Eric Weigand, DVM, president of the California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA).

One way to celebrate National Pet Week and simultaneously enrich a child's mind, says the CVMA, is talking about animals at home and school. The presence of an animal in the home can motivate children to think and learn, encourage a respect for life, and foster a sense of responsibility.

Having a pet can also help promote good animal-care practices, according to the CVMA, because children taught how to handle and care for animals share responsibility. And when taking a child with you for a veterinary visit, he or she learns the job veterinary professionals do and the difference veterinarians make in a pets life.

The CVMA also says National Pet Week is an opportunity to emphasize for children both the caring and caretaking things people can do for animals, including: providing regular health care; using I.D. tags, microchips, or other means to ensure pets are safe and identified; having pets spayed and neutered; finding the right diet for pets; and giving them plenty of attention, exercise and companionship.

Posted: May 8, 2006, 5:00 a.m. EST

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Maine coon    Sheboygan Falls, WI

3/22/2009 9:50:16 PM

definately will!

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