Vet professionals share ‘pawprints on their heart’ for National Pet Month
Eight in 10 vets have at least one pet in their household, but more than half (56%) actually own more, it has been revealed.
A study from the BVA found vets in clinical practice are more likely than average to own a pet, with 86% owning animals compared to 68% of those not in practice.
And if anyone is in any doubt about how kindhearted the average vet is , more than two-thirds (68%) said all or some of their pets came from rehoming abandoned or stray animals.
Dogs top the list of most popular pets for vets, with 55% having canine pals and almost a quarter (24%) owning more than one dog.
Throughout National Pet Month, which began on April 1, the BVA is encouraging veterinary professionals to join the conversation on social media and share photos and stories about the special animals in their lives.
BVA President Justine Shotton has always been a dog lover and her love of cuddly canines grew only stronger when her parents welcomed two dogs, both Japanese Spitz, called Tora and Hana into their family.
Justine said: “I had a very strong bond with my childhood dogs, especially with Tora. We would take them to dog shows for fun and Tora even made it to Crufts! I would build agility courses for the garden out of garden furniture and we would race from the end of the garden to the house – Tora would always win!
“They lived long, happy lives – Hana reaching 14 and Tora the grand age of 15 – and were the dogs who completed our family, who helped me decide to be a vet and, in that respect, were the dogs who changed my life. They got me through school, through vet school and all the challenges and ups and downs of that period of my life and they will always occupy a special place in my heart.”
Justine still has a special bond with a dog, her parents eight-year-old Japanese Spitz Miko, the great-grandson of her childhood dogs Tora and Hana. Miko, like her beloved Tora, is incredibly active and accompanied her running up the fells in the Lake District when she was marathon training and Justine is always happy to have him at her side.
She explained: “As a vet, when you are looking after someone’s beloved pet, if you have had your own animals, it is easy to empathise with them as you have likely been the worried pet owner once or twice yourself when your own pet was poorly. Our own animals are just as special to us and they all leave pawprints on our hearts.”
To get involved with the campaign on social media, veterinary professionals can use #VetsAndTheirPets, #VNsAndTheirPets or #NationalPetMonth2022 to share their own posts and read about the pets which mean so much.