Happy National Pet Month!
The month of May is a chance to observe a myriad of different causes, organizations, peoples, and things but my favorite, top-of-the-list, month-long observance is our pets. That’s right, May is National Pet Month! And I am so thrilled about it. It’s another opportunity to celebrate our pets and spoil them just a bit.
While you’re thinking of the perfect national spoil-your-pet month agenda, I would like to highlight just a few of their most special qualities and how those qualities help us to be happier, healthier, humans: the reason I find such pleasure in celebrating them this month and every month.
Our pets have abilities that we as humans often have difficulty mastering. And while they have countless endearing and admirable qualities, I want to bring attention to their ability to show loyalty, empathy, and love. These are abilities nearly impossible to obtain without true sincerity. Even when sincerity isn’t a problem, our own self-care often hinders our ability to fully dedicate ourselves to those expressions.
A dog has no such problems. He does not place his own well-being above the love he shares for his beloved human. And love truly is the commonality of all of these traits.
Some of you may question your pet’s loyalty when she decides to abandon you for a squirrel or eats one of your favorite shoes, but those are simply the indiscretions of a pure and playful soul. When it comes down to it, she would do anything for you. A dog on your doormat absolutely quivering with joy waiting to see you after a long day away is the purest form of loyalty. As is the way she comes back to you after deciding that, for today, the squirrel wins.
Loyalty may seem a small thing, but loyalty from another builds our trust in that individual, makes us feel loved and needed, and, in turn, makes us want to return that love and help in any way to meet their needs.
The intuition of our pets is astounding. They don’t need us to tell them our problems in order to empathize with us. Not that my cats haven’t caught an earful now and then, but let me tell you, I didn’t need to open my mouth for them to know that something was wrong.
Our pets have an ability to read us better than a book. They read our mood, movements, facial expressions, tone, and our hearts. They know what we feel and feel what we feel. Their ability to mirror our moods show us support and we relate to that in a very real way. After giving that support of solidarity, they comfort us through their enduring presence, an ear to scratch, belly to rub, a chin on our knee, or warmth settled in at our toes.
Whether it was a bad day at work or a lifelong struggle with anxiety and self-doubt, their comfort and support makes a measurable difference in our mood, happiness, and overall health.
Love is so much more than a one-way expression. It is not only their ability to show love, but their ability to share it, to recreate it in our own actions, that is so incredible.
The loyal companionship and empathetic kindness of our pets brings love to our lives on a daily basis. But they’re also sharing their love simply in being present. Being constant. Being a driving force to get outside in the peace of nature. Being so lovable themselves that we can’t help but to reach out and love them back. Love may not be a cure-all, but I know that so much would still be broken without it.
Our pets have a huge impact on our mental and physical wellness. From their ability to get us walking outdoors to their inspirationally positive behaviors that help to lift our own chins up, they improve our lives. They make us happier and healthier.
I believe that it’s because they show us loyalty, empathy, and love and share with us how to return those expressions. Simply put, they are perfect creatures who we’re lucky to share our lives with. Perfection is found so rarely that it’s only suitable we celebrate it. Happy National Pet Month!
How will you celebrate?