Is Your City Pet-Friendly? Here’s A List of Traits All Furball-Friendly Communities Need to Have
Mars Petcare US’s Better Cities for Pets program outlines 12 traits every city must have before it’s considered to be a pet-friendly community.
Breed bans, lack of pet-friendly housing options and establishments, and inadequate methods of helping homeless pets: these are just a few of many outdated yet common community rules that make lives harder for both pets and their owners.
Our four-legged babies deserve to feel welcome in the community they live, and their caretakers shouldn’t have less options than others, simply because they have a pet. People at Mars petcare recognized the potential for a mindset change, and hope that their initiative, Better Cities for Pets™, will be one of the things that ensures pets and their pawrents are welcomed everywhere.
According to a playbook, that’s free to download, a pet-friendly city needs to have the following 12 traits:
- Partners collaborate to end pet homelessness
- Shelters are warm and welcoming to encourage adoption
- Community cat programs humanely address overpopulation
- Pet-friendly housing options exist for all families
- Pet ownership is not restricted by breed or size bans
- Amenities are available that help pets and pet owners
- Pet needs are included in green space, park and city planning
- Pet hydration and waste stations are plentiful and easy to find
- People know the expectations for pets in public places
- Retail and restaurants make it easy to be out with your pet
- Traveling with pets is accessible, safe and affordable
- Workplaces know and support the benefits of pets at work
In the initial stages of the campaign, the Better Cities for Pets™ was piloted in Nashville and Franklin, Tennessee, and the communities in these cities have already seen an improvement, There were more dog parks being built, businesses started opening their doors to four-legged companions of their clientele, and pet-friendly amenities were installed.
In the words of Mars Petcare, their goal is to help bring about a pawsitiwe change, where there would be “fewer pets in shelters, more pet-friendly places, and happier, healthier lives for both people and pets”. But to do that, they need our help, as advocates in our own communities. If you want to learn more about joining the #BetterCitiesForPets movement and making a change for your furry companions or neighbors, visit the campaign’s website.