(Welcome to the weekly pet column of Pet Connection Programs Inc. of Marilla, N.Y. A new article is posted each week, so be sure to check back on a regular basis!)
Relationships between dogs and their owners are reaching new levels; the 2016 Beneful National Dog Week survey reveals that nearly all American dog owners surveyed consider their beloved pups a part of their family (97 percent) and one of their best friends (93 percent). In honor of National Dog Week (Sept. 18-24), Beneful and its Friends of Beneful partners nationwide are helping dogs and their owners celebrate a happy and healthy week together by sharing inspiring personal stories, tips and giveaways online.
Does your dog understand you? Do you both appreciate an afternoon snuggle? If so, you’re not alone. Here’s what surveyed dog owners had to say about their relationships with their four-legged friends:
• A Relationship Like No Other. Nearly all dog owners surveyed agree their dogs are part of their family (97 percent) and one of their best friends (93 percent).
• You Get Me. Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of dog owners surveyed agree their dogs understand them like no human could, up from 58 percent in a 2015 survey.
• Strike a Pose. More than half of dog owners surveyed (54 percent) agree their dogs love having their pictures taken.
• What Makes Fido Happy? According to surveyed dog owners, the activities they agree make their dogs happiest include:
1. Mealtime (95 percent)
2. Going on walks (93 percent)
3. Eating dog treats (93 percent)
4. Chewing a dog bone (88 percent)
5. Snuggling (85 percent)
6. Riding in the car (78 percent)
7. Playing fetch (77 percent)
8. Going to the dog park (72 percent)
9. Running/jogging with someone (71 percent)
10. Being brushed/groomed (63 percent)
(For more information on pets and animal adoption, please visit www.petconnectionprogramsinc.com. Or, visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PetConnectionProgramsinc. Located in Marilla, N.Y., Pet Connection Programs Inc. is a nonprofit maternity and special care shelter founded in 1984.)