The Responsibilities of Pet ‘Guardianship’

Have you heard of the Pet Guardianship movement?

It’s an initiative started by our sponsors Pet Planet that aims to change how the world views, treats, and respects our pet companions.

It starts with the name of the movement itself. Using the word ‘guardianship’ instead of ‘ownership’ helps shift the mindset from our pets being something akin to possessions that we can buy or trade, towards the sense that these animals are members of our family who should be nurtured, valued, and cared for. The Pet Guardianship movement also helps to promote the overall health of pets, which aids in the prevention of pet cancer and other illnesses.

To join the movement, beyond changing your mindset, there are 12 promises that you need to make:

  1. Make a lifetime commitment to my animal companion
  2. Adopt my pet only through responsible rescues and ethical breeders
  3. Spay or neuter my animal companion for their health and to prevent overpopulation
  4. Provide nutritious health food, fresh water and daily exercise for my animal companion
  5. Eliminate the use of toxic household cleaners and outdoor chemicals
  6. Care for the emotional needs of my animal companion
  7. Understand and work through my animal companion’s behaviour issues
  8. Treat my animal companion with compassion and gentleness
  9. Report suspected animal abuse or neglect
  10. Call myself and others “Guardian” rather than “Owner”
  11. Encourage others to embrace Guardianship

One major tenet of the pet guardianship movement that we would like to explore further is ‘Responsible Pet Acquisition’. There are many options out there when you are considering bringing a pet into your home. The Guardianship movement requests that you do your research before you take that leap. Check to make sure the place you are getting your new dog or cat isn’t a puppy/kitty mill. These ‘sellers’ see animals as commodities and help promote the idea of animals as possessions. Click here for more info on how to responsibly bring a pet into your home.

Check out Pet Planet’s ‘Guardian Health Manual’ for more tips and information on how to become a pet guardian.

Do you have any questions about the Guardianship movement? Reach out today for more info!

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