MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life

MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life
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Monday, January 16, 2012

Owning a Pet is a Privilege and More Says American Veterinary Medical Association

Thanks to Nancy Kay, DVM, Author of Speaking for Spot and her newsletter, I just became aware that the Executive Board of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recently approved the following guidelines for responsible pet ownership, approved this past November, 2011. I love hearing words like "privilege" and "commitment for life" associated with pet ownership/guardianship!

Does this qualify for proper exercise?

Guidelines for Responsible Pet Ownership
Owning a pet is a privilege and should result in a mutually beneficial relationship. However, the benefits of pet ownership come with obligations. Responsible pet ownership includes:
  •  Committing to the relationship for the life of the pet(s). 
  • Avoiding impulsive decisions about obtaining pet(s), and carefully selecting pet(s) suited to your home and lifestyle.
  •  Recognizing that ownership of pet(s) requires an investment of time and money.
  •  Keeping only the type and number of pets for which an appropriate and safe environment can be provided, including appropriate food, water, shelter, health care and companionship.
  • Ensuring pets are properly identified (i.e., tags, microchips, or tattoos) and that registration information in associated databases is kept up-to-date
  • Adherence to local ordinances, including licensing and leash requirements.
  • Controlling pet(s)' reproduction through managed breeding, containment, or spay/neuter thereby helping to address animal control and overpopulation problems.
  • Establishing and maintaining a veterinarian-client-patient relationship.
  • Providing preventive (e.g., vaccinations, parasite control) and therapeutic health care for the life of pet(s) in consultation with, and as recommended by, its veterinarian.
  • Socialization and appropriate training for pet(s), which facilitates their well-being and the well-being of other animals and people.
  • Preventing pet(s) from negatively impacting other people, animals and the environment, including proper waste disposal, noise control, and not allowing pet(s) to stray or become feral.
  • Providing exercise and mental stimulation appropriate to the pet(s)' age, breed, and health status.
  • Advance preparation to ensure the pet(s)' well-being in the case of an emergency or disaster, including assembling an evacuation kit.
  • Making alternative arrangements if caring for the pet is no longer possible.
  • Recognizing declines in the pet(s)' quality of life and making decisions in consultation with a veterinarian regarding appropriate end-of-life care (e.g., palliative care, hospice, euthanasia).
Would that all pet guardians provide mental stimulation, socialization, training, exercise, proper health care, spay and neuter and more for their beloved treasures, the animals they are entrusted with... Thanks, AVMA!

Posted By Dawn Kairns, Author of MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life

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