June 3-9 is Pet Appreciation Week
Posted May 31, 2018
While every day with our pets may be special, we celebrate with
extra love and attention to our pets during Pet Appreciation Week,
Kit Darling, the infection control coordinator at the Texas
A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences,
said pets offer more than just companionship. “We should remember
to recognize our pets everyday as they provide unconditional love
and help us to alleviate stress, anxiety, loneliness, and
depression,” Darling said.
“Pets help improve our mood. They have a non-judgmental nature,
while encouraging playfulness, laughter, and increased energy
levels. These activities are good for our health and
All pets offer some sort of therapy, but some pets are specially
trained to spread love throughout communities.
“In our local community, we have an animal-assisted therapy
group called Aggieland Pets with a Purpose,” Darling said. “Our
pets visit most of the nursing and assisted-living facilities,
schools, and the juvenile detention center in our community. Some
healthcare professionals even use our pets to help with physical,
occupational, and speech therapy. Besides providing therapeutic
relief, pets also teach us valuable life lessons—responsibility and
We can show affection to our pets by making sure that they have
plenty of food, water, exercise, and veterinary visits.
Additionally, training our pets to be well-behaved can require a
lot of dedication.
“Pets are like a baby or a young child learning which behaviors
are acceptable,” Darling said. “They will make mistakes, but
consistency in training is important for them to become good
pets. The more time you spend teaching them appropriate
behaviors, the better pet they will be. This is also a great way to
bond with them.”
Caring for pets can also be self-fulfilling, as they can help us
to feel needed and purposeful.
Above all, pets teach us how to love unconditionally.
“Pets are often more forgiving than we are,” Darling said. “They
want us to love them. Our pets enjoy the present and do not worry
about the past or the future; they remind us to take time to enjoy
the simple pleasures of life and not worry so much.”
With all of the “paws”itive benefits of having a pet, it’s easy
to see why they have such a special role in our lives. For Pet
Appreciation Week, be sure to give your pet some extra love.
Pet Talk is a service of the Texas A&M College of
Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. Stories can be
viewed on the web at vetmed.tamu.edu/pet-talk. Suggestions for
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