Several days ago T.M. mentioned that they "put down" one of their two cherished pets - a dog. Those of us who have the joy of the close companionship of pets (or any type) and have experienced their loss can empathize when someone announces their loss. In fact, T.M. shared his history of pets and the good memories of them growing up with his children.
Mom and Dad never allowed pets (that is - in the house) when we were growing up. Coming from farm backgrounds animals (and pets) we always outside and served various purposes beyond just being a companion. However, they did allow us to "adopt" a stray cat once or twice. Fast forward and now Vana, D'Lane and I have had various pets in our families - personally I can inventory over 18 in my last 60 years (current inventory is 2 dogs and 2 cats).
I've maintained that having pets will extend your life (and all pet owners agree). But is this claim really true? An interesting article on this subject "Can Pets Help You Live Longer" concludes: "Besides being good companions and adding joy to many people’s lives, pets may provide some health benefits."
My view is that 60% of U.S. Households (165 million) must believe that the benefits of owning pets exceeds any costs - financial, emotional and physical.