The Benefits Of Pet Ownership In A Pandemic

Many people are finding themselves in the unexpected position of spending more time at home. A pet can bring companionship and joy to your life even as you practice social distancing in the wake of COVID-19.

According to the International Federation on Aging, a pet can help lower your blood pressure and boost your mood. Other studies have shown pets can alleviate depression and reduce anxiety.

Choosing to adopt a pet also sends a positive ripple effect throughout the community. You’re giving a loving home to an animal in need, which helps create more space for other homeless animals looking for their forever homes, and supports the shelter in caring for even more animals including wildlife.

What if you can’t adopt? There are many other ways you can help pets and spread the benefits of pet companionship – a joy we call Humanimality. Here are some ways you can help spread the Humanimality and not COVID-19.

While you are online, show some love for shelter animals. You can make a gift to support animals from any secure location with internet access. Gifts can be made in the form of a one-time or monthly donation. There are also many gift options available for purchase benefiting pets.

Think beyond “traditional.” Public gatherings have been discouraged and/or limited at the moment. That means many fundraising events are still benefiting pets by going virtual. A virtual event is where the community meets online at a pre-determined time to interact with one another. Participating in a virtual event, like SPCA Tampa Bay Virtual Pet Walk (Saturday, April 18), is a way of helping your community and animals, from the comfort of your living room.

Donate items for animals. Animal adoption shelters are often in need of items that will help the animals in their care. Each organization maintains a wish list online with specific needs, and it often includes items you can purchase and have shipped directly to the shelter. If you intend to donate goods to a shelter it is always good to call ahead and learn what is most needed.

If you’re interested in more ways you might be able to help local animals, contact SPCA Tampa Bay at 727-586-3591 or go online at

By Management Team, SPCA Tampa Bay