Many of us enjoy the companionship of pets. In fact, according to a 2008 survey by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, 63 percent of American households include pets. These animals don't ask for much--just a short list of basics, such as food, shelter, veterinary care, and of course, our companionship. Pets offer far more in return, teaching us about love, improving our emotional and physical health, and providing us with unconditional affection and friendship.
For many kids, the family pet is their best friend--a companion who not only provides unconditional love, but who also teaches them about friendship, responsibility, loyalty, and empathy. While most family pets are cats and dogs, other animals can be wonderful additions to your home. Rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, small birds, and fish can make great family pets, as long as they receive the specialized care they need. Even though these animals are smaller than a cat or dog, they require just as much attention and care.
The key to creating a true "family pet"--one who is gentle, loyal, and loving to both animals and people--is to treat the animal as a beloved family member and to provide the training and care he deserves. It's not enough to get a pet "for the kids." A pet is not a temporary playmate for children, but a lifelong family member who depends on the entire family, especially adults.
Whether you're looking for general pet-care guidelines, information on the importance of spaying or neutering, you've come to the right place. Our pet-care information will help you develop and maintain a long and rewarding relationship with your animal companion.