Human Animal Bond Research Institute Replaces In-Person Pet Night Reception with Virtual Programming on the Importance of Pets during the Pandemic
Washington, D.C. (August 24, 2020) — Hosted by the Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI), Pet Week on Capitol Hill will bring the power of pets to Capitol Hill, delivering the message to elected representatives that pets are important for human health and wellbeing, especially during these unprecedented times. In an effort to safeguard the health and safety of all, Pet Night on Capitol Hill, the popular, in-person annual reception has been converted to a series of virtual conversations to be held September 8-10, 2020.
“Pets have become even more important during the coronavirus pandemic,” said Steven Feldman, Executive Director of HABRI. “Pet Week on Capitol Hill will feature conversations with Members of Congress and pet care leaders about the importance of pet ownership in America.”
In addition to a wealth of information about pets and related policies and legislation that will strengthen the human-animal bond, Pet Week will still include the much-anticipated Cutest Pets on Capitol competition! Pet Week on Capitol Hill is a free event, with all programming streaming from www.PetNight.com.
The full schedule is listed below:
Tuesday, September 8, 2020
|4:00 PM EDT||Pet Nation: The Importance of Pets in America
Mark Cushing Author, Pet Nation
Steven Feldman Executive Director, HABRI
Wednesday, September 9, 2020
|12 PM EDT||Lifesaving Pet-Related Legislation: A Discussion Of Important Initiatives That Will Help Keep Pets And People Safe, Healthy And Happy Together
Dr. Kurt Venator, DVM, PhD, Chief Veterinary Officer, Nestlé Purina PetCare (and his puppy Emmie)
Nicole Forsyth, President & CEO, RedRover
Nicole Lanahan, Executive Director, Got Your Six Support Dogs
|4:00 PM EDT||One Health Act: The Role of Veterinary Medicine in Preventing Future Pandemics
Representative Kurt Schrader (OR-5)
Thursday, September 10, 2020
|12 PM EDT||Pet Ownership and Pet Industry Economics in the Post-COVID World
Steve King, President & CEO, American Pet Products Association
Dave Bolen Industry Specialist, Graham Partners
|4:00 PM EDT||COVID-19 Impact on Pet Fostering and Adoption
Susanne Kogut, President, Petco Foundation
|5:00 PM EDT||Cutest Pets on Capitol Hill: Honoring the Cutest Congressional Companions from Both Sides of the Aisle
Presented by the Animal Health Institute (AHI)
Please visit www.PetNight.com to add sessions to your calendars, submit questions to the speakers, and sign-up early for Pet Night on Capitol Hill 2021. All programs will be available on-demand after initial broadcast.
“We plan to be back with Pet Night on Capitol Hill next year to celebrate in person with the pets that we love so much,” added Feldman. “Until then, we hope that virtual Pet Week will be helpful, and that all of the participating pet care organizations will serve as valuable resources for our friends on Capitol Hill.”
The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) is a not-for-profit organization that maintains the world’s largest online library of human-animal bond research and information; funds innovative research projects to scientifically document the health benefits of companion animals; and informs the public about human-animal bond research and the beneficial role of companion animals in society. For more information, please visit http://www.habri.org.
More Press Releases
New Research to Study Therapy Dog Visits for Elderly ICU Patients
The Human Animal Bond Research Initiative (HABRI) Foundation today announced it has awarded a $6,000 grant to The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) School of Nursing for a pilot research study, Biobehavioral Effects of Therapy Dog Visitation in Elderly Intensive Care Unit Patients, to investigate how brief visits from therapy dogs can reduce stress in older intensive care unit (ICU) patients. “Elderly patients who are admitted to the intensive care unit are at risk for anxiety that negatively affects physical health,” said primary researcher Sandra Branson, PhD, MSN, RN, Assistant Professor at the UTHealth School of Nursing. “Limited evidence suggests the effectiveness of therapy dog visits in improving these biological responses. We’re hoping this study will help fill the gap and potentially translate into regular practice in ICUs.” Further exploring the effects of therapy dogs on stress in elderly ICU patients, the study aims to provide research-based evidence proving the efficacy of brief, 10-minute therapy dog visits in improving stress associated with being in an ICU. The 18-month study will observe two groups of 10 elderly participants in the ICU; one group will receive a 10-minute therapy dog visits at random and the other will receive usual care without the visits. Patients’ psychosocial, endocrine, and inflammatory responses will be measured immediately before and after the 10-minute care session and compared between the two groups. It is predicted that participants who receive the therapy dog visits will show greater reductions in the measured responses. The results of this study could yield therapy dog visits as a regular, low-risk and low-cost treatment intervention for patients in the ICU. “HABRI’s grant to UTHealth will help advance the science that demonstrates the benefits of companion animals for disease recovery and healthy aging,” said HABRI Executive Director Steven Feldman. “The deployment of therapy...
New Research to Study Impact of Therapy Dogs on Easing Child Anxiety in the Emergency Room
The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) and Pet Partners announced today a grant to Indiana University School of Medicine for a new research project, Canine-assisted anxiety reduction in pediatric emergency care (CANINE III). The study will investigate the impact of therapy dog visits on the anxiety levels of children in emergency care. “Registered Pet Partners therapy dog teams visit hospitals throughout the country, and we know they can put a smile on a child’s face, no matter what they are going through,” said C. Annie Peters, President and CEO of Pet Partners. “Scientific research to validate the efficacy of therapy dogs in the emergency room has the potential to not only provide more children with much needed comfort and emotional support, but to also help serve as a complementary intervention to improve medical outcomes.” “Virtually all children experience some degree of psychological stress as patients in the emergency department,” says the Principal Investigator, Jeffrey Kline, MD, IU School of Medicine “The inclusion of therapy dog visits in addition to a child-life specialist could provide a low cost, low risk method to help reduce child and parental anxiety in the emergency department.” CANINE III is a NCT-registered, two-arm, block randomized trial with one to one matching of patients receiving therapy dogs as an adjunct with a child life specialist, compared with children who receive child life specialists alone. The children will receive a 15-minute visit, with the research team periodically collecting saliva samples to test for cortisol levels, or the level of stress. Dr. Kline will complete this project alongside co-investigator Alan Beck, PhD, Purdue University. The study will also test if therapy dogs afford greater anxiety reduction in children with psychiatric complaints, autism spectrum disorder, or brain injury, versus children with none of those conditions. All...
Study Finds Dogs De-Stress Families with Autistic Children
The Human Animal Bond Research Initiative (HABRI) Foundation announced today the results of a long-term study to explore the effects of pet dogs on families with children with autism spectrum disorder, just published in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior. The findings of the study showed significantly improved family functioning of families with a dog compared to those without. The study also found a reduction in parent-child dysfunctional interactions among families that had a dog. “While there is growing evidence that animal-assisted therapy can aid in the treatment of children with autism spectrum disorders, this study is one of the first to examine how pet dog ownership can also improve the lives of those more widely affected by autism,” said the principal investigator on the study, Professor Daniel Mills, BVSc, PhD, from the University of Lincoln, UK. “We found a significant, positive relationship between parenting stress of the child’s main caregiver and their attachment to the family dog. This highlights the importance of the bond between the carer and their dog in the benefits they gain.” HABRI Executive Director Steven Feldman said: “Parents of children with autism can experience increased anxiety and stress, and now we have strong scientific evidence to show that pets can have positive effects on these quality-of-life issues. Families with an autistic child should consider pet ownership as a way to improve family harmony.” This...