The great American cartoonist Charles M. Schulz said it best with his cartoon strip “Happiness is a warm puppy.” In this simple 4-panel strip, Lucy walks over to Snoopy, pats him on the head, hugs him and walks away simply stating “Happiness is a warm puppy.” Snoopy wasn’t even her dog and Lucy was the most fussy grump of them all, but Charles Schulz was able to convey the unconditional love, warmth, security and happiness one little creature has over a stressed out, worry-wart human race.
Dogs, and pets in general, have been scientifically proven to help us live happier and healthier lives. Those of us with pets know that a simple tail wag or head nuzzle after a long day can instantly relieve stress. Those of us lucky enough to bring them with us to work can tell you how much less stressed and more productive they can make us. With seemingly endless happiness and unconditional love, pets enrich our lives every day.
Ami Moore, an author and Canine Behaviorist has sought out to make America a more “dog friendly” place, as it is in Europe, so that everyone can benefit from our furry friends. She says, “We desire to increase the acceptance of dogs, leashed and unleashed, into all of the public spaces of our cities: taxis, restaurants, stores and malls. Our goal is that the physical, mental and emotional health benefits of dog ownership and companionship be available to everyone, everywhere, all the time, just as they are in the great cities of Europe.” Born from this dream came National Hug Your Hound Day, a national holiday dedicated to “increasing awareness of the human-friendly and dog-friendly use of urban spaces and to encourage the inclusion of nature in all aspects of urban life.”
So today and every day, hug your hound or your tabby, and thank them for helping you live a happier, healthier life. Dedicate yourself to ensuring they are afforded the same health and happiness and when you can … share the love.