Valentine’s Day is not just for celebrating the special people in our lives; it’s also a chance for animal lovers to show how much they love their pets.
Animals are a huge part of our lives, and the bond between a person and their pet can be incredibly strong.
We have spoken to experts and animal lovers to find out why our pets are so special, and what we can do to celebrate them this Valentine’s Day.
Why we love our pets so much
From the comfort they provide to the joy they bring, here are some of the reasons why people love their pets so much
Pets provide unconditional love and affection; they don’t judge, don’t hold grudges, and they always offer a warm and loving welcome.
This kind of love is priceless and can be incredibly comforting to those who feel lonely or stressed.
Dogs and cats, and a lot of other animals, are known for their ability to reduce stress and anxiety.
Spending time with a pet can lower blood pressure, ease anxiety, and provide comfort during difficult times.
A sense of purpose
They can provide people with a sense of purpose and responsibility.
Whether it’s feeding, walking, or just playing with them, caring for a pet can give people a sense of accomplishment and helps them feel needed.
Pets encourage their owners to lead an active lifestyle.
Whether it’s a walk in the park or a run in the countryside, pets provide an opportunity for their owners to get outside, get some exercise, and enjoy the beauty of nature.
Pets provide their owners with countless unforgettable memories.
From silly moments to milestones, pets are there to share life’s special moments with their owners.
Pets are incredibly loyal and provide their owners with companionship. Whether it’s a quiet night in or a long walk in the park, pets are always there for their owners, providing comfort and support.
Sense of humour
Pets are known for their silly and playful personalities, and their antics can bring a smile to their owners’ faces. Whether it’s a mischievous dog or a silly cat, pets provide their owners with endless entertainment and joy.
Ideas for animal lovers on Valentine’s Day
Whether you spend the day volunteering, snuggling up with your pets, or creating special memories at the beach or park, there’s definitely plenty of ways to show your love for animals this Valentine’s Day.
Volunteer or donate to animal charity
If you don’t have a pet but want to celebrate animals, why not volunteer at a local animal shelter or donate to your favourite charity?
One of the best ways to show your love for animals is by supporting the shelters and charities working tirelessly to help those in need.
Spend Valentine’s Day volunteering at a local animal shelter where you can help look after the dogs and cats, or get a group of friends together and raise some much-needed money for an animal charity you support.
Have a movie night with your pets
Snuggle up with your pets and watch a movie or two. Choose a movie with animal themes, like “Bolt,” “Homeward Bound,” or “Marley and Me” (just make sure you have plenty of tissues!)
Bake treats for your pets
Spoil your pooch with a bone, their favourite food, or even bake a yummy pet-friendly treat.
The internet is full of recipes for homemade dog and cat treats, so a yummy recipe is just a click (and bake) away!
Plan a fun activity
Get some fresh air and exercise with your pets or take them to the local dog park or off-leash beach so they can have a splash. No matter where you end up, enjoy the scenery and spend quality time with your pets on this special day.
Create a photo album or scrapbook
Create a photo album or scrapbook dedicated to your special friend.
Fill it with photos, stories, and special moments that you have shared with your furry friends – memories to keep for a lifetime.
Give your pets a special toy or accessory
Spoil your pet with a special gift, such as a new toy or accessory – why not buy a heart-shaped soft toy to really celebrate the occasion.
Have a pet-friendly picnic
Pack a picnic basket and spend the day with your pets in a local park.
Enjoy a meal and playtime together, maybe even invite some friends, and make it a day to remember!
Welcoming a new pet this Valentine’s Day?
If you’re considering welcoming a new pet into your home, why not choose the most romantic time of the year to do it!
PETstock Ambassador Lara Shannon offers her advice on how to find your perfect pet match, and the flags to look out for when considering a new pet.
Understanding your personal circumstances
When finding a pet soulmate, it’s vital to decide on one that is most compatible with your lifestyle and surroundings.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of adopting or purchasing a pet that doesn’t suit your lifestyle or living situation.
“Some considerations to think about include your working arrangements, exercise capabilities, and time commitments,” says Lara.
“Other factors to consider include the size of your place, and even your financial responsibilities.
“Pets are for life, so avoid getting one impulsively without careful consideration and research.”
Consider your love language and personality
Just as humans have different ways of giving and receiving love, so do pets.
American author and marriage counsellor Gary Chapman, developed five love languages of expressing and accepting love, including words of affirmation, quality time, physical
touch, acts of service and receiving gifts.
“Most animals associate with many, if not all the love languages, but some express it more than others. Some cats, for example, love physical touch over words of affirmation,” Lara says.
“If the sound of you at home, relaxing with your fur baby on your lap sounds like a good night, perhaps a cat might be a great option for you.”
Lara urges prospective pet owners to look for certain character traits in the animal they’d like to take home.
“If you’re a person that prefers doing relaxing, indoor activities on their days off, it might be more beneficial to consider an animal that isn’t extremely active and outgoing.
“Pets have personalities like we do; some are timid, some are extroverted, some are goofy, and some are earnest.
“If we can sense these before we take them home and decide accordingly based on our own personality and needs, we’ll be one step closer to finding our perfect soul mate.”
Don’t just consider dogs and cats
Sometimes, your perfect match might not be a cat or a dog.
There are other pets that you may not have considered before that could be looking for home.
“There are animals out there like guinea pigs, rabbits, fish, birds, or reptiles, that make for some great options.
Like any other animal, Lara advises, make sure you do your research before taking them home as they are a commitment for life.
“Some species, like reptiles, have specific needs and enclosures to be safe and happy, while rabbits require daily human interaction and exercise, which many people don’t realise.
“Aside from making great companions, options like guinea pigs, rabbits and fish, make excellent beginner-friendly pet options for new families.”