Every dog has his day, and this Friday, June 21, just happens to be a really big one.
It's Take Your Dog to Work Day, your four-legged friend's turn to prove who is truly the boss. The day was founded in 1999 to celebrate the incredible companionship dogs provide and to encourage animal adoption.
Dogs have been having their day for some time now. Everywhere you look, there is some kind of pet-project going on, which for a dog lover like me, is a dream come true.
There are dogs starring in reality TV. Doggy day care and pooch pamperers are in high demand. Big well-known companies like Paul Mitchell, Omaha Steaks, and Harley Davidson have all jumped on the gravy-train offering pet products including shampoos, food and clothes. The pet insurance business is booming. And, luxury hotels and apartment buildings are also catering to our furry friends, finally.
Make no bones about it, the pet industry is a multi-billion dollar business. According to the American Pet Products Association, 62 percent households in the U.S. own a pet. It's estimated that owners will spend about $55.5 billion on goods and services for their pets this year, up about $2 billion from last year.
That's a small price to pay for the unconditional love and loyalty you get from a pet. The bond between dog and dog owner began about 30,000 years ago when dogs started to become domesticated. Since then, canines have become steadfast companions not only at home but also as service dogs, in the workplace and on the battlefield.
Recently, I wrote a persuasive essay for a forensics competition on "Why My Grandmother Should Get a Dog." It certainly wasn't hard to make a strong case for the canine. In addition to the unconditional love, companionship and sense of security that comes with dog ownership, there are also many health benefits. Research shows that owning a pet can help a person increase their amount of exercise, reduce their stress and lower their blood pressure.
And if that's not enough good news, here's more. The entire week is "Take Your Pet to Work Week" so there's no need to go to the office without your furry or even feathered (if your pet is a bird) friend.
Here's to my three dogs, my best furry friends forever.
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