Families and pets are a part of each other
Pets are a part of your family, whether you love them or not. Science agrees with us.
How animals joined the household
There has been a strong human-animal bond since the first domesticated animals (hey, goats! ). Animals were used as tools for food and labor. Horses and oxen carried people and heavy loads while dogs and cats hunted.
The ancient Egyptians welcomed cats into their homes to keep snakes and mice at bay. They were instantly smitten by their (adorable!) predators. The ancient Egyptians decked out their cats with gold and jewels. They even gave them seats at banquets.
Dogs and cats have been kept in Europe and America for centuries. They were used for companion animals, mice-hunting, and hunting cats. People still tended to view animals as property. Even though many pet owners loved their pets, they were not considered family members.
The Industrial Revolution was the first time people relaxed and stopped worrying about their survival. People began adopting pets as companions instead of working. As they spent more time at home, their relationship with the pets grew deeper and more loving.
How pets become family members
Today, people have greater freedom to live a happy life. Some people choose a life with 2.5 children and white picket fencing. Others live a non-stop life of travel with their dog BFF. There are more family types than ever.
In 2018, more than 60% of American homes have pets. The most common are dogs and cats. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, pets are a big part of American households. 85% of dog and 76% of cat owners consider their pets a family member. There are no surprises, right?
Our pets are unique to us, as is how we see them in our families! The research of Andrea Laurent Simpson, a sociologist, shows that each person has a different view of our pets’ role. Many parents with children consider their pets part of the family. When children grow up with pets, they often refer to them as “siblings,” “best friends,” or “siblings.”
Many adults, who are not in a nuclear family, also feel the same way. Single adults often consider their pets their best friends, who will stick by them through any breakup or promotion. Pets can be the less-laborious babies for people who choose not to have children.
Pets are an important part of many families. We love them and do everything we can to keep them happy. Keep them Happy. You do it for those you love.