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Chicago Animal Care and Control protects public safety and ensures the humane care of animals through sheltering, pet placement, education and animal law enforcement. If you’re set on getting a pet for a birthday or the holidays, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) suggests first buying and wrapping some pet supplies (pet bowls, pet bed, leash, etc.) as gifts, then selecting the pet as a family. That way, everyone has time to really think about whether your family is ready for a pet.

There’s a final twist to this story: recent studies have shown that affection for pets goes hand-in-hand with concern for the natural world. It seems that people can be roughly divided into those that feel little affinity for animals or the environment, and those who are predisposed to delight in both, adopting pet-keeping as one of the few available outlets in today’s urbanised society.

People in later life experiencing typical life stresses can be comforted by a companion pet. It is thought that a dog can be a stress buffer that softens the effects of adverse events on a person. With an animal in the home, people with Alzheimer’s are thought to have fewer anxious outbursts. When travelling to Belgium from a country that is not mentioned in Annex II, you must contact the competent authority, in this case the Customs, immediately after entering Belgium. They will check on the basis of the identification document whether all conditions are fulfilled and they may also control the animal by themselves.

That’s exactly the same journey that blacks were on. When blacks were in Africa, a lot of white culture considered them wild animals; they were abducted and brought into society, and for centuries they were considered property. They could be bought, sold, and abused really without repercussion. Then you had the rise of the abolitionists who helped turn them from property to people. Animal advocates see that as an instructive road map.

I might actually care if this study tried to demonstrate that people who call their pets “pets” treat their animals worse than people who call their pets “animal companions”, or something. Oh well, at least England’s taxpayers picked up that bill. If you live in this country, it may surprise you to learn that dogs by the hundreds or thousands freely roam the streets elsewhere. Bali has about 150,000 street dogs. As expats snatched them up for pets, an astonishing learning opportunity was born – with lessons you can apply right here and now.