Sept. 9, 2019 – PHOENIX, Ariz. — From backpacks and homework to fresh new sneakers, back-to-school season is here and one thing many parents and teachers may not think about are the many mental and physical benefits of having a pet in the home or classroom.
Families love having a pet. In fact, 68 percent of U.S. households, or about 85 million families own a pet, according to the 2017-2018 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), which is up from 56 percent of U.S. households in 1988, the first year the survey was conducted.
PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare, advocates for the many benefits the human-animal relationship offers both children and adults. During PetSmart Charities' National Adoption Weekend Sept. 13-15, potential adoptees are encouraged to consider how adopting a pet could benefit the entire family or even a classroom.
According to the Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI), a nonprofit industry research and education group, research demonstrates the positive influence pets have on a child’s physical, social, emotional and cognitive development.
- Classroom pets improve students’ attitudes toward school and have facilitated students learning lessons in responsibility, respect and empathy
- Scientific research has demonstrated the positive impact of early exposure to pets on the development of allergies and asthma later in life
- For children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) the presence of companion animals improved positive social behaviors, including becoming more receptive to social advances from peers
“As a parent, I’ve seen the abundant benefits owning a pet can have on a child’s development both mentally and emotionally,” said Amanda Landis-Hanna, DVM, senior manager of veterinary outreach at PetSmart Charities. “Pets help teach children compassion, empathy and respect for all living things. They’ve also been shown to reduce stress levels, especially in children with special needs.”
PetSmart Charities is doing its part to strengthen this bond, providing grants supporting nearly 4,000 animal welfare organizations across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico to provide shelter, socialization and veterinary care to homeless pets to prepare them for adoption. PetSmart and its non-profit partner have worked together for 25 years to find loving homes for over 8.5 million pets and counting through its in-store adoption program during National Adoption Weekends held in Feb., May, Sept. and Nov., as well as every day at the PetSmart Charities Everyday Adoption Centers located in stores.
PetSmart Charities’ National Adoption Weekend Details:
September 13-15, thousands of animal welfare organizations will bring a host of adoptable shelter pets, including dogs, cats, kittens, puppies, and various small pets, into nearly every PetSmart store across North America.
Dates: Sept. 13 – 15, 2019
Times: Friday and Saturday: 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. (local time), Sunday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. (local time)
Locations: Nearly every one of the 1,600+ PetSmart stores across North America. Visit www.petsmart.com to find a store near you.
About PetSmart Charities®
PetSmart Charities, Inc. is committed to finding lifelong, loving homes for all pets by supporting programs and thought leadership that bring people and pets together. Through its in-store adoption program in all PetSmart® stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico, PetSmart Charities helps to find forever homes and families for more than 600,000 shelter pets each year. PetSmart Charities also provides grant funding to nonprofits aligned with its mission. Each year, millions of generous PetSmart shoppers help pets in need by donating to PetSmart Charities using the PIN pads at checkout registers inside PetSmart stores. In turn, PetSmart Charities efficiently uses more than 90 cents of every dollar donated to fulfill its role as the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, granting more than $390 million since its inception in 1994. Independent from PetSmart Inc., PetSmart Charities is a 501(c)(3) organization that has received the Four-Star Rating from Charity Navigator, a third-party organization that reports on the effectiveness, accountability and transparency of nonprofits, for the past 16 years in a row – placing it among the top one percent of charities rated by this organization. To learn more visit www.petsmartcharities.org.
PetSmart, Inc. is the largest specialty pet retailer of services and solutions for the lifetime needs of pets. At PetSmart, we love pets, and we believe pets make us better people. Every day with every connection, PetSmart’s passionate associates help bring pet parents closer to their pets so they, together, can live more fulfilled lives. This vision impacts everything we do for our customers, the way we support our associates and how we give back to our communities. PetSmart employs approximately 56,000 associates and operates more than 1,650 pet stores in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, as well as more than 200 in-store PetSmart PetsHotel® dog and cat boarding facilities. The retailer provides a broad range of competitively priced pet food and products, as well as services such as dog training, pet grooming, pet boarding, PetSmart Doggie Day Camp™ and pet adoption. PetSmart, PetSmart Charities® and PetSmart Charities® of Canada work with nearly 4,000 animal welfare organizations to bring adoptable pets into stores so they have the best chance possible of finding a forever home. Through this in-store adoption program and other signature events, PetSmart has facilitated more than 8 million adoptions, more than any other brick-and-mortar organization. In May 2017, PetSmart acquired Chewy.com, a leading online retailer of pet food and products in the U.S., which operates as an independent subsidiary.
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PetSmart homepage: http://www.petsmart.com/
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PetSmart Charities Contact:
Golin for PetSmart Charities
PetSmart 24-Hour Media Line: 623-587-2177