National Pet Month is observed in America in May. It is a campaign that is coordinated by National Office of Animal Health (NOAH) and Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA). This month is dedicated to celebrating and raising awareness of responsible pet ownership through educational campaigns and resources across various platforms. Whether they are just being playful, silly, and adorable, or are working as service animals aiding people with disabilities, disorders, or impairments, pets contribute immense love and a variety of benefits to the lives of humans. National Pet Month also aims to support pet adoption, educate people on the mutual benefits of pet ownership both for pets as well as owners, increase public awareness of services available from professionals who work with animals, and appreciate the role, value, and extraordinary contribution to society of working companion animals.
Stats and Facts
According to the 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), 70% of U.S. households, or about 90.5 million families, own a pet. A professor at Western Carolina University, Psychologist Harold Herzog, is an expert in the human-animal connection, and has spent over three decades investigating the complex psychology of human interactions with other species. Herzog addresses some of the recorded benefits of pet ownership, which include “higher survival rates, fewer heart attacks, less loneliness, better blood pressure, better psychological well-being, lower rates of depression and stress levels, fewer doctor visits, increased self-esteem, better sleep and more physical activity.” A 2019 review of nearly 70 years of research found that dog ownership was associated with a 24% risk reduction for all-cause mortality as compared to non-ownership. Pets have been found to alleviate allergies and boost immune function. A study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found that newborns who live with cats have a lower risk of childhood asthma, pneumonia, and bronchiolitis. Pets can play an integral role in the treatment process. For example, at Upwell Advisors, pets are welcome to accompany clients on their recovery journey. Pet interaction can help to release endorphins, producing a calming effect. This can help alleviate pain, reduce stress, and improve one’s overall psychological state. National Pet Month reminds us to honor our cherished companions and spend some extra time loving and pampering them throughout the month.
Upwell Advisors offers premier access to experts in the mental health, addiction, and wellness spaces for all stages of growth and recovery, from crisis to wellness, in a private one-on-one environment for individuals and their families.