Yet the 2015 Pet Positive Score has shown that Australia is not as pet-friendly as we thought, as pet populations are unexpectedly on the decline. The Mars Petcare survey showed that the number of family cats has fallen by 200,000 and the number of family dogs has dropped by 100, 000 nationally over a 12 month period. In NSW, cat ownership has been reduced by 7.9 per cent to 642,000 cats while the number of pet dogs decreased by 1.2 per cent to 1.3 million.
‘Bondi Vet’ Dr Chris Brown explains why families benefit by owning pets.
“Pets can help their owners stay physically and emotionally healthy,” he said.
“There are a range of reasons that people can be deterred from pet ownership and we need to find ways to keep Australia pet-friendly so that future generations can continue to enjoy the benefits of a furry friend”.
9 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Owning Pets
- Pet owners exercise more.
- Studies show pet owners have greater-self esteem.
- Statistically, pet owners make fewer visits to the Doctors.
- Pets improve childhood development.
- Pets build immunity especially in children.
- Pet owners make more friends.
- Pets can help older people tackle loneliness.
- Pets improve cardiovascular health.
- Pets can help build local communities.
The Pet Positive Score, launched by Dr Chris, has identified the most important factors that contribute to pet-friendliness.
These include attributes such as the number of pet friendly outdoor public areas, the availability of businesses that provide service for pets and pet friendly rental accommodation conditions.
The latest data from Mars Petcare Australia also ranked Australian cities in order of most to least pet friendly – and the results may surprise you.
Melbourne came in at number one, followed by the Gold Coast and Canberra. Surprisingly, Sydney is less accommodating to our furry friends, finishing second last behind South Australian towns.