I see that the Blue Cross has commissioned a survey to see if there are any benefits to owning pets. Apart from the obvious, that is.
And the results?
From what is admittedly a fairly small sample (1000 people out of the billions on the planet, of whom 13 million are classified as pet owners living in the UK), came the following conclusions.
If you are a pet owner, you are more likely to:
- have a job (40% of non pet owners were unemployed)
- spend more 'family time' together
- enjoy your job
- be fitter, taking at least 2 hours more exercise a week
- earn £3000 per year more
- manage an average of 5 people in your work (against 2 for non pet owners)
I'm not sure what to do with this astounding information, but if it's representative of the real situation, rehoming centres like Battersea Dog's Home and the Mayhew really ought to be empty.
When Irving Welsh wrote that now infamous sequence in Trainspotting, maybe he missed something (and I paraphrase in case there are children watching):
"Choose Life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a big television, choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players and electrical tin openers. Choose good health, low cholesterol, and dental insurance. Choose fixed interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends. Choose leisurewear and matching luggage. Choose a three-piece suit on hire purchase in a range of fabrics. Choose DIY and wondering who you are on Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing, spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing junk food into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pissing your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish brats you spawned to replace yourselves. Choose your future. Choose life… "
Maybe if this data had come out sooner and he had bothered to read it, some of the nihilist gloom could have been avoided.
Choose a dog would be my advice.
Or a cat.