National Pet Day:
Celebrated annually on April 11th, the National Pet Day reminds us of the joy pets give us and the urgent need to raise awareness about the plight of pets orphaned or living in shelters. If you love pets, don’t wait forever to get your loved animal home!
|2022||11th April||Monday||United States|
|2023||11th April||Tuesday||United States|
|2024||11th April||Wednesday||United States|
Why Pet Day?
We have plenty of reasons to celebrate Pet Day! Man has had a close relationship with animals since the beginning. They have been great companions as pets irrespective of the form they take – four-legged, crawlers, flyers, runners, singers, huggers, and whatnot!
Humans’ close association with pets can be traced back to ancient Egypt dating 3500 B.C. And the idea of preventing animal cruelty had begun in 1866 by Henry Bergh. He founded an American society in New York to prevent cruelty to animals.
Also, studies show that having dogs as pets reduced the risk of death by heart diseases by 36%! Animals have a healing effect as they offer companionship for the elderly who have empty nests, stay alone, or are facing chronic illnesses.
Pets give you many opportunities to get out, walk, and meet others! Regular walking, running, and socializing help keep your cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and triglycerides levels under normal levels! Outdoor activities enable better cognitive functions in people of all ages.
Pets are great for your mental health too! They make you less lonely, reduce anxiety and PTSD symptoms! Children with Autism were calmer around pets, giving great relief for parents. On the other hand, children with pets learn responsibility and compassion earlier than those without pets. Thus the young and the old are benefitted from pets.
Although the advantages of having a pet are many, over 2 million animals die in shelters every year. The number of stray dogs globally amounts to over 200 million as many are born on the streets or are abandoned by their owners for various reasons. And then there are illegal animal farms where poor quality animals are reared for commercial purposes.
The percentage of animals entering the shelter far exceeds the number of animals that find a good home.
Thus to prevent unwanted animal populations, nurture and protect our existing ones, and giving them a good home is at the core of the Pet Day celebration.
It is high time to create awareness among our families, friends, and society, against taking in pets they can’t handle as it only leads to their abandonment and eventually their death if they don’t find a home.
The day encourages us to protect our pets and love them. Before you take a pet in, check if it suits your family, budget, space, and health. The major causes of abandoning pets are because they don’t match your family’s persona or your spouses hate them.
Pet Day also encourages us to see animals as our family. And if you do love animals and love to have them as pets, it is highly appreciated for mother earth and for the economy to get your pet from the local shelter.
Pets keep you engaged, offer companionship, physical health, mental health, and make socializing easy!
This day also reminds us that, having pets is great and taking care of them responsibly till the end is much greater.
You could choose your pets from a variety of animals. Before that understand what kind of a person you are i.e., whether you are a parakeet person, dog person, cat person, money person, hen person, mouse, or a lizard person. This is the first step to choose a pet.
If you love dogs or birds, not all dogs and birds may suit you. So again you will have to check out the energy levels of each pet before you move ahead.
You can have any animal as a pet as long as they are permitted by the state and they are not harmful to your family or neighbors.
This day also calls our attention to the hands required to help animals at the shelter with their food, shelter, blankets, medication, and food. So animal lovers and advocates can support Pet Day in this way too.
With the unlimited love animals shower on us, it is only right to protect them and nurture them. It is a responsibility, just like taking care of a baby. You will have to be prepared to take care of their naughtiness, restlessness, anxiety, excitement, and their fears. Regular health checkups are needed for their healthy growth!
You need not always have to have pets that are purebred to experience the love and warmth. There are millions of pets out there that need your help and compassion. So don’t hesitate to stretch your hands to support animals in the shelter, donate for them, or volunteer! With the right pet, your family is sure to have a good and healthy time with not a moment to feel alone!
Today is a strong reminder to take care of your pets, and love them even more! So hug your fluffy ones, bond with your inattentive kitten, encourage your turtle or race your bunny!
How Can We Observe National Pet Day:
Adopt a pet buddy
A brilliant way to celebrate Pet Day is by adopting any of your favorite animals from a shelter or a purebred rescue organization. A visit to the shelter can surprise you about the various animals you can choose from and give them a home they long for.
If you don’t have the time or the resources to care for pets, you can show your love for pets by volunteering at pet shelters near you. Check with the shelter to understand in what ways you can be of help.
You could show your love by donating essential things like blankets, food, and toys to your favorite animals at the shelter or any animal welfare organization near you.
Take part in peaceful demonstrations against pet exploitations
You can organize or take part in peaceful demonstrations against pet shops selling pets from kitten or puppy mills. As most of them are bred in poor husbandry resulting in the poor health of the animals.
Raise funds for pets in shelters
Another great way to support pets that are in dire need at the shelter is to organize fundraisers.
You can choose any popular event like marathons, bake sales, garage sales, etc to raise funds! You can contribute the funds to your local shelter or any of your favorite animal welfare organizations.
Throw a party
Invite friends and family with pets to celebrate the day! You can have pet-friendly treats for pets and some delicious food and drinks for yourself. Turn up some light music (loud music/noise can damage our pet’s hearing) and have a great time pampering your pet buddies.
Pets & you – Photoshoot
Go on a photoshoot spree by dressing up your pets with fun accessories! You could also enroll in a pet fashion walk if your community is hosting one! Don’t forget to post your funny pet videos or candid cute photos on your social network pages! Who knows, your pet could be the next sensation on social media!
Assist elderly with their pets
The elderly often need help taking care of pets as most suffer from weak knees. If you happen to have elderly people staying near your home, you could offer to walk, feed or bathe their pets. You could also check if the pet has any overdue visit to the vet and take it there. No greater joy than being of help isn’t it?
Help ill friends with their pets
If friends or family with pets have fallen ill, do offer to take care of their pets until they are well and back!
Visit the Vet.
This Pet Day, don’t forget to take your pet to the Vet for a regular health check-up!
Spay & Neuter pets for unwanted population
Get your pets neutered or spayed if you don’t want them to produce unwanted animals.
Purchase/gift a National Pet Day T-shirt
You could create awareness by wearing T-shirts with National Pet Day printed on it! You could also gift them to people who love taking care of animals!
Buy some fun & pet-friendly toys
Gift your pet some fun but safe toys today! You can purchase them online or from the local pet stores! You will be surprised how much they love toys. Watching them play is entertainment in itself!
Let the pet love be shared on social media!
Tell friends on social media about National Pet Day and encourage them to celebrate it with you! You can share posts, videos, blogs, and pictures about your pets to celebrate the day! Use #NationalPetDay and #PetDay to post today!
Interesting Facts About National Pet Day:
Here are some interesting facts about pets!
- The first batch of domesticated cats entered Europe in 900 B.C. by the Phoenician traders.
- The idea of dog collars can be traced back to 3500 B.C. Mesopotamia!
- Approximately 6.5 million pets enter shelters each year across the US
- Only 1.6 million dogs and cats respectively find a home
- Top five most popular pets in the U.S. are Dog (45%), Cat (30%), Fish (9%), Bird (5%), Mouse/Gerbil/Hamster(2%)
- Among others, people also love to have Horses (2%), Snakes(2%), Lizards (Chameleon, Gecko, Iguana) (1%), Guinea pigs (1%), and Tarantula (1%)
- People who treat their pets as a family have 22% more chances of finding love!
- Around 11% of Americans watch TV, do yoga, read books, dance, etc. with their pets
- Dogs are considered best friends by over 10% of Americans
- Around 10% agree that they use a special voice when talking to pets
- 10% of Pets owners have conversations with pets as if they are humans
- Maru, a Japanese cat is one of the most viewed animals on Youtube
- Did you know? Cats are found to be grooming themselves 50% of the time when they are awake!
- Dogs are born deaf but as they get older their hearing is 4 times that of a human
- A dog can sweat only through its paws!
- Obesity is the top health concern among pet dogs.
- Japan celebrates its cats on February 22nd
- Thailand celebrates its native elephants on March 13th
- Latvia celebrates Zirgu Diena (horses) on January 17th
- Hedgehog Day is celebrated in Italy on February 2nd
- Poland observes a day of help to forest animals on February 11 to emphasize the role of forest animals in a balanced environment.
- Dog’s birthdays are celebrated by 75% of pet owners
- Over 30% of Americans celebrate National Pet Day by offering special treats to their pets
- National Pet Day witnesses many people adopting pets and thus a huge increase in the purchases of pet food!
History of National Pet Day:
The National Pet Day was founded by Colleen Paige in 2006. Ms. Paige is a Pet Lifestyle expert and an advocate for animal welfare. She believes that all animals including the not-so-cuddly ones like reptiles and rats are sentient as well, and deserve people’s love and compassion.
She is creating awareness not to abandon pets and help animals in the shelter by pledging $5 each month. She also encourages people to adopt pets from animal rescue organizations rather than shop for them from a breeder. Reducing animals landing in shelters or their deaths in the heart of this holiday!
Ms. Paige’s started this holiday in the U.S., but today it is celebrated across the globe. We can see the Pet Day celebrations in the U.K., Israel, Spain, Ireland, Austria, Guam, New Zealand, Scotland, and many more nations!
Many celebrities have followed suit as well and have taken up the cause for pets. This day has been popularly promoted by Carrie Underwood, Seth Myers, Ellen De Generes, Taylor Swift, Cee Loo, Willy Nelson, among others!
Social media has played a significant role in giving this cause the momentum it deserves. You could use social media too to create awareness about pets and raise funds for the needy ones!
Now, go home or visit the nearest shelter and shower some love on pets today and every day! Take them out for a walk, on a drive, spoil them with healthy treats, new toys, a little belly rub, or simply cuddle up!