Almost half UK households have an animal member - whether that's a goldfish or a Great Dane. Some say no home is complete without one, but here are five fantastic reasons to get that pet :
Animals make great friends. The right pet can provide endless affection .. or even conversation! (Though, you should never get parrot only as you want it to speak - many of the most talkative breeds simply always keep quiet)
It's not only dogs that drag their unfortunate owners out walking come rain or shine, horse riding is one of the best forms of exercise and the owners of even the most elegant pony will get covered in mud exercising their pet (and themselves!)
3. Showing off
It's not only proud (grand)parents who fill their phone with pictures of their smallest family members. Devoted "parents" can also fill their social media feeds with images of their 'fur babies'' ... some even have their own accounts! (Hello, to DM's favourite Instagram fan, Wolfie Bandage Boy)
4. Protection - a feeling of security of having an animal guarding your home is a big bonus for many pet owners. The Romans used mockingbirds to announce visitors, but a fierce (or floppy) dog is a more effective burglar deterrent.
5. Comfort and joy!
Having a pet has been proven to proven to help mental health. After all, there's little more comforting that the feeling of stroking a small living, breathing creature. Perhaps it's the daredevils among us who are choosing to keep the prickly Hedgehogs as small, caged pets.... stroke if you dare!!
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With the exception of artists, inventors, and teenagers - we humans are diurnal daytime creatures on the whole, and although it’s one thing to be out and about during the night in a street lit urban environment, it’s a very different scenario if you find yourself in, say… oh, I don’t know, a forest per se. Where, if you’re lucky, you may hear the unmistakable cry or hoot of an Owl: natures very own nocturne, a stark reminder of the unknown peril of night, and a creature that has featured heavily in myth and folklore throughout the ages.