Responsible Pet Ownership Ensures High Quality of Life for Companion Animals

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In light of Responsible Pet Ownership, the Texas Veterinary Medical Association (TVMA) encourages pet owners to speak with their veterinarian to establish a plan for ensuring long and healthy lives for the pets in their families.

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Approximately 85 million U.S. families own pets, according to an American Pet Products Association (APPA) survey conducted in 2017-2018.

February is National Responsible Pet Ownership Month, marking a time for pet owners to recognize the importance of providing proper care for their pets and to deepen the bonds shared with them. Approximately 85 million U.S. families own pets, according to an American Pet Products Association (APPA) survey conducted in 2017-2018. The Texas Veterinary Medical Association (TVMA) encourages those pet owners to speak with their veterinarian this month to establish a plan for ensuring long and healthy lives for the pets in their families.

Some of the basic tenets of responsible pet ownership include:

  • Regular exams with your veterinarian, addressing issues like dental health, skin allergies and health issues that arise with age. TexVetPets.org, the veterinary professional-written and peer-reviewed pet health website of TVMA, produced a three-part video series on what to expect at wellness exams: https://tinyurl.com/ybkx3hh3.
  • Keeping your pet up-to-date with vaccinations for diseases like rabies, canine distemper and parvovirus for dogs and feline distemper, feline calicivirus and feline herpesvirus type I for cats
  • Maintaining a healthy weight for your pet by feeding a healthy diet and incorporating exercise into its lifestyle
  • Reducing financial stress by putting pet health care in your family’s budget
  • Making sure your pet has proper identification, whether it’s by microchip or a collar with your contact information (ideally both)
  • Ensuring your pet is kept safe from the elements, making sure it is protected during times of extreme cold or heat and always keeping it properly hydrated
  • Establishing natural disaster preparation plans in the event of emergencies, including creating an evacuation kit
  • Having spay or neuter procedures performed to curb the pet overpopulation problem
  • Lots of love and playtime with all members of the family!

Fulfilling these components of pet ownership is the best investment you can make in your pet’s life. “Preventative care in veterinary medicine not only includes vaccinations but now encompasses a wide variety of life stage-specific options,” said TVMA President-Elect Aaron Rainer, DVM, MPH, who practices in Katy, Texas. “Your veterinarian can guide you in making these important decisions for your family’s pets.”

Partnering with your veterinarian is a crucial component of responsible pet ownership. TexVetPets.org allows this collaboration to continue online in between visits to the clinic by offering a reliable source of accurate pet health information that is peer-reviewed and written by TVMA members—the veterinary professionals of Texas. When you’re in need of information on ownership topics such as animal welfare, clinic etiquette, zoonotic diseases, weight-loss plans and caring for senior pets, visit http://www.texvetpets.org.

About the Texas Veterinary Medical Association

Founded in 1903, the Texas Veterinary Medical Association is a professional association composed of more than 3,700 veterinarians committed to protecting public health, promoting high educational, ethical and moral standards within the veterinary profession and educating the public about animal health and its relationship to human health. For more information, call 512/452-4224 or visit http://www.tvma.org.

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