You’d think Australia would be one of the most pet friendly countries in the world. But in fact it really isn’t. So much so that pet ownership in Australia is on the decline for the first time. In just 12 months, dog ownership has dropped by 100,000 and cat ownership by 200,000. This is incredible considering the enormous benefits that pets have on our lives. And so from this, Dr Chris Brown has launched the “Keep Australia Pet Friendly” campaign.
It’s not just about keeping Australia pet friendly, it’s about making the country more pet friendly and catching up with the rest of the world. I see everyday through social media just how countries throughout Europe as well as North America are incredibly embracing of pets in our lives. Pets are allowed on public transport including buses, trains and even planes but here in Australia, you must have a service dog for a pet to be allowed on public transport. Finding a cafe, restaurant or bar that you can dine at with your pet is few and far between.
There are a handful of beaches in the Sydney area where dogs are allowed. There are a lot more in the Wollongong area on the South Coast of NSW but the council has been trying to cut that back dramatically. Then there are dog parks. In my local council there are 3. Head down to Wollongong and there are 5 but 4 are not dog friendly in any way. They are on hills with no fencing and surrounded by roads. A piece of land the council couldn’t do anything with and called it a dog park. Is this really acceptable for our four legged best friends?
Having pets provides so many benefits to our health, physically, mentally and emotionally. So why aren’t we doing more to include pets in our lives? Why are there so few rental properties that allow pets? And how about travelling with your pet. How many places allow pets in the house or hotel room and not just outside? Nowhere near enough.
Dr Chris Brown is currently making his way around Australia campaigning to keep Australia pet friendly. He has written an open letter to Australia to urge community members and policy makers to to consider pets in their decision making. You can read Dr Chris Brown’s letter on the Pet Positives blog.
So what can we do to help keep Australia pet friendly and catch up on the pet friendly arena? Contact your local, state and federal ministers and put it in writing that you want to see our pets allowed on public transport, at cafes and restaurants and have more pet friendly venues in and around your city. Jump onto social media like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and share why Australia should be more pet friendly and join the social media campaign using #keepauspetfriendly! Get the word out that pets are everything to us and the future generation shouldn’t miss out on the unconditional love and health benefits that pets provide us. Help keep Australia pet friendly!
To learn more about the Keep Australia Pet Friendly campaign, check out the Pet Positives website and sign up to the newsletter for campaign activities. Join their social media campaign too by jumping onto Facebook and giving them a like and follow the campaign hashtag #keepauspetfriendly on both Instagram and Twitter.