National Pet Week

National Pet Week® celebrates the pets that enrich our lives and encourages responsible pet care every day of the year. Created by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the Auxiliary to the AVMA in 1981, it’s observed during the first full week of May each year.

Whether companion, comedian, confidant, or protector, our pets are always there for us. National Pet Week® celebrates this bond and encourages pet owners to be certain to provide their furry, feathery or scaly friends with everything needed for a happy, healthy life.

Everyone loves their pets, but not everyone is aware of all that their pet needs to be happy and healthy long into its senior years. Texas Veterinary Medical Association member veterinarians – experts in animal health, welfare, and behavior – invite you to take each of the essential actions highlighted during National Pet Week® that are vital to provide a lifetime of love. Each day of the week focuses on a different topic essential to responsible pet ownership.


Choose Well: Commit for life
Select the pet that’s right for your family’s lifestyle, and make a commitment for that pet’s life. Even if you’ve already welcomed a pet into your home, your veterinarian can help you better understand the social and healthcare needs of your individual pet.


Behavioral health: Habits for Happy Pets
Help your pet get comfortable in new situations by exposing it safely to a variety of interactions with other animals, people, places, and activities. Everyone is more comfortable when pets are well socialized!


Nutrition and Exercise Matter
An estimated 52.7% of dogs and 57.9% cats in the United States are overweight or obese. Veterinarians encourage pet owners to get regular exercise—with their pets! This improves cardiovascular health, helps both pets and people maintain a healthy weight, supports good mental health for both owner and pet, and strengthens the human-animal bond.


Love your pet? See your vet!
Regular preventive care is critical to keep pets healthy and improve both quality and length of life. It also can save owners a great deal of money in the long run. Don’t wait to take your pet to the veterinarian only when it’s visibly sick or injured. Pets often hide signs of illness, and regular check-ups are vital to catching health problems early. Early treatment means better health for your pet.


Travel with Care
Traveling with pets requires advance planning and coordination to keep everybody safe. Whether you’re taking a short car trip or flying to another state or country, getting your pet safely to your destination requires special precautions. These range from proper restraints during travel to veterinary exams and travel certificates. Plan ahead, and know exactly what’s needed when you travel with pets of different species.


Emergencies Happen: Be prepared
We never know when or where an emergency will happen. As a pet owner, you need to plan ahead, and include your pets in your family’s emergency plan. Know what to do in case of an emergency, how to assemble emergency and first aid kits, and how to properly identify your pets so your family can be reunited if you’re ever separated.


Plan For Their Care: Give Them a Lifetime of Love
Thanks to better care, pets are living longer now than they ever have before—and as pets get older, they need extra care and attention. Regular veterinary examinations can detect problems in older pets before they become advanced or life-threatening. They also can improve your pet’s chances for a longer and healthier life. Learn what’s “normal” and what may signal a reason for concern about an aging pet.