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Why Do We Have Pets

 by simone on 03 Jun 2014 |
2 Comment(s)

There’s no doubt that pets enrich our lives. Science is proving that forming a close bond with an animal makes us happier, reduces stress and improves our overall health and wellbeing. But what are the motivators to having a pet in the first place, or how do we view their purpose in our household?

Having a pet is a commitment. Whatever the kind of animal, all pets cost money, require time, effort and responsibility and can impact on your plans and life choices. So why do so many of us, approximately 63% of US and Australian households, willingly sign up for pets?


Companionship is still the main reason that people want pets - and that's pets of all sorts, from four-legged furballs to the most exotic birds & parrots. Pets ease loneliness, offer comfort and provide unconditional love. Almost all people say thath their pet is a part of the family. 

Structure and routine

Pets require routine caring. Many people like or need this type of structure and purpose to their life. It makes them feel needed, valued and can be very satisfying. Pets are a wonderful reason to get out of bed and get on with enjoying the day.


Sharing your life with a pet can provide meaning and bring a sense of fulfilment. It’s very rewarding to be involved in the life of another and being a major reason for their happiness; or indeed reason for their being in the case of shelter, rescue and adopted animals. 


This does depend on the kind of animal, although we have met some pretty protective guinea pigs in our time! A dog in the home can deter unwelcome visitors and when on walks can make sure that any unfriendly people keep their distance. 


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For children

Many parents view pets as a great way to teach children invaluable lessons about responsibility and compassion, or, to provide children with a friend for life. When reflecting on childhood pets, people will often say they considered their pet as a sibling, a best friend or confidante. Pets encourage children to play, be active and treat others with kindness and respect.

Exercise and sociability

Again, this depends on the kind of animal, but some people have pets as a reason to introduce exercise into their day. Dogs in particular need outdoor activity such as walking and visiting parks, rivers, lakes and beaches. In various cities, such as Hong Kong and others throughout Asia, people will take their caged birds to parks so that the birds have time outside and interact with other birds. Pets promote socialising, conversation and new friendships amongst owners, especially when joining a group associated with your pet. 

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Hobby or interest

For some, their love extends to wanting to show the world how special their pet is. These people enjoy the work, thrill and competition of the breed or agility show circuit. Whether being judged on beauty and breed characteristics or herding sheep, competitions prioritise the welfare of the animals involved.


Not much in the world is able to bring more joy to either an adult or child than watching and frolicking with a pet. Pets are fun, funny and encourage playfulness. For a lot of people, this is reason enough. 

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Cheryl - Comment
Cheryl05 Jun 2014Reply
A very enjoyable article with a lot of truth in it.
Q - Comment
Q05 Jun 2014Reply
Why do I have pets? Because they're my only constant source of joy, that's why!

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