Pets are good for us
The rewarding connection between people and their pets stretches further than simply putting a smile on our face – robust research demonstrates that pet ownership is of real value to our health too. Young children with pets can benefit from a lower frequency of asthma and some allergies, while older children gain a stronger immune system, resulting in fewer days off school sick. Not just children benefit from pet ownership – older people with pets, on average, make 21 per cent fewer visits to their doctors too.
The Pet Charity exists to spread awareness about the benefits of pet ownership, increase pet welfare through education and research, and to run projects that directly address welfare needs. Our flagship project, the National Centre for Reptile Welfare, rescue’s and rehomes a wide range of reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates as well as allowing volunteering and behavioral research opportunities for students of Hadlow College in Kent.
Our online resource; “The Pet Portal” stores care sheets and other information which has been reviewed by a range of expert organisations to provide readers with the confidence that they can trust the information. Anyone can submit information for adding to the database and we hope that over time this will develop into a trusted “go-to” site for prospective pet owners. Along side the Pet Portal sits an exciting new project; “Pet Know How”, which will see the British Small Animal Veterinary Association, The Pet Charity, The British Veterinary Zoological Society and the Companion Animal Sector Council work to improve pet owner pre-purchase education. We are hoping to be a able to provide more information on this project shortly.
We are also developing a scheme, Pets in Schools, to encourage children to learn about the responsibilities involved in pet care.
Too many animal charities focus on the suffering of pets, but the majority of the UK’s pets live long, healthy and happy lives – bringing real joy and companionship to their owners lives. Almost half of us share their home with a pet, and here at The Pet Charity we believe more should be done to raise awareness of how pets are good for our health and wellbeing, whilst supporting animals that need our help.