The curious case of canine companions

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The trend of having a canine companion is neither new nor the trend of considering them as a family member. Today, pets find their mention in almost every human conversation due to the space they have built for themselves. From reading and understanding human behaviours, presence of mind, adaptive nature, along with their caring, supportive, and protective nature, they have become invaluable companions for us.

To a larger extent, they replicate human behaviour, which found mention in the classic book of Charles Darwin ‘On The Origin Of Species’. In his book, he recognised how the diversified canines backed his theory a century and a half ago.

By their very nature, hailing from the lines of wolves, dogs initially became human’s hunting companions. Their role over time evolved, as much as the breeds evolved. However, with the evolution of human lifestyle and the ecosystem, there has been a gradual shift from this thought process. Earlier individuals and families have shown resistance to adopting dogs or any pets but now, have turned out to treat them with utmost care and love. Similar to how parents want the best for their children, modern pet parents want the best services and offerings for their pets as well.This is irrespective of the age of the pet parent. GenZ, Millennials, or GenX, all have come together to create a safe space for their pets.

Today, when we speak of pet care companies/brands operating in the domestic or global market, the sector gets the push because of human emotions. The thin line between pets and babies seems to have blurred, be it in Tier I cities or Tier II & III cities. Especially, in the case of puppies, the emotional connection with them leads pet parents to spend a significant amount of money on their care. No doubt, products for newborns or puppies are always at a higher price point. This is also the time when the urge to establish long-lasting memories dominates the spending power of the pet parents.Be it their food, toys, or health supplements, there are tailored products for every breed and age group. Additionally, to amp up their cuteness, today pet parents can get the most fashionable dresses and accessories that add to their fashion statement and joy in their lives.

The value and the benefits our dogs bring to us often remain unnoticed by many; most particularly unknown. According to a study, children who were exposed to dogs while still in the womb as their moms spent time with dogs, had a decreased chance of acquiring eczema in childhood.Additionally, going for a daily walk with your dog enhances your physical activity. This in return, helps you maintain your health. According to the American Heart Association, interacting with dogs can increase your production of ‘happy’ hormones such as oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine. This leads to a greater sense of well-being and helps lower cortisol levels.They also help reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, alleviate depression, and increase fitness.Knowingly or unknowingly, from before birth to old age, the four-legged in-house companion keeps you away from several health issues.

Our dogs are way smarter than we think, and they have the capability of learning similar to a two-year-old toddler. With proper training, guidance, and cue, they are able to understand human emotions and feelings at unimagined levels. As we celebrate International Dog Day, we should also remember the responsibilities that we hold towards these furry companions. They are dependent on us and hence, we should ensure that we take good care of their health, grooming, and other necessities. This requires lots of commitment and patience but is worthy of the learnings and love they bring to us.

Most importantly, irrespective of pet dogs or stray dogs, both play an important role. While our pets help us feel loved in our houses; the strays with their troublesome and challenging life ensures that we are safe from outsiders. They deserve an equal amount of love they shower on us; it’s our companionship that matters. Hence, as humans, it’s our responsibility to create a space for happy pets!

(Ashok Jaipuria, MD and Chairman of Zigly, pet care brand of Cosmo First)

Source : IANS