May is National Pet Month!
May is National Pet Month
As if we needed another reason to celebrate thebeautiful month of May, it is National Pet Month here in the United States (inthe UK, the festivities happen in April), a month long celebration of companionanimals meant to raise awareness of the many benefits of living with animalsand being a responsible animal caregiver. While we don’t love the word pet torefer to companion animals, we are thrilled to share the message of NationalPet Month, that animals make our lives better in so many ways, and they deserveto be honored.
Animals enhance our lives in myriad ways. They show usunconditional love, help reduce our stress levels, and keep us from feelinglonely to name just a few of the benefits of living with animals. In return forall these benefits, our companion animals do not ask for much. They just wantus to take care of them and show them some love. When we commit to sharing ourlives with animals, we get so much more than we give, but we also need toremember to honor that commitment by treating our companion animals withrespect, dignity, and care. We need to spend time with them, feed themhealthful food, provide them with all the things they need, including beddingand toys, and keep them healthy by maintaining a regular schedule of veterinaryvisits. And most importantly, we need to understand that the commitment we maketo our animals is for life.
Whether you are lucky enough to live with companionanimals or just understand the important roles they play in the world, thereare several ways to celebrate National Pet Month and share your love of animalswith others.
Spread the word about the importance of animals inyour life with your social media network. Share a cute or funny story aboutyour animal companion, accompanied, of course, by adorable photos, with thehashtag #nationalpetmonth to help get the word out about this celebratory monthand encourage others to see how full animals make our lives and how importantit is to be a responsible animal caregiver. Be sure to share details about whatit is like to care for an animal and how much of a long-term commitment it is,so that others will understand both the benefits and the responsibilities ofliving with an animal. This way, when your heart-melting photos entice yourfriends to adopt their own animals, they will know how to do it responsibly.
Consider supporting your local animal shelter with adonation of time, money, or needed goods. Most shelters rely on volunteers tokeep doing their amazing work of keeping animals safe until they are adoptedinto a loving home. The shelters will always welcome help and typically providewishlists of much needed items on their websites making helping out as easy asplacing an online order and having it sent directly to the shelter. If you areable to volunteer your time, call the shelter to find out what you can do tobest help them save animals.
Show Your Animal Some Extra Love
While you love your companion animal every day andsurely show her how much with cuddles and care, take some time this month to dosomething special to show her how much you appreciate her impact on your life.People who live with animals tend to be healthier and less stressed, and thatalone is reason to celebrate your animal with some extra attention, a few newtoys and treats, and some additional fun and games. Consider learning a fewanimal massage techniques and treat your companion to a relaxing “spa”treatment.
Share Your Home with a Shelter Animal
If you have the space in your home and heart and ifyou have the time to devote to caring for a new animal, then consider adoptinga shelter animal. Bringing a companion animal home from a shelter can make bothof your lives better. Just be sure that you have the appropriate resources andtime available to help the animal transition and live well in your home. Toomany animals are in shelters because things with their initial adopters did notwork out as the people imagined and the animals ended up surrendered to theshelter or, even worse, just dumped outside. Adopting from a shelter gives ananimal a second chance at life. If you can’t commit to adopting right now,consider fostering a shelter animal instead. You can help the shelter take onmore animals than they have space for and give the animal a comfortable placeto live while awaiting a forever home.
There are so many ways to celebrate your companionanimal and raise awareness for responsible animal caregiving during NationalPet Month this May. How do you plan to spread the word and show the love?