Momma Told Me: We may make their world's bigger, but they make our lives grander.
If you've been wondering where we've been, well, the answer's all over, really. Most recently we drove 14 hours up the Pacific Coast, and 14 hours back down, just to hop on a plane to New York after a quick visit with Momma. I say 'we' because Nora travels well- Truffles the Tuxie, not so much. In fact, travel is always less stressful WITH my pets than without. I'm the sort of pet parent who has to Face Time with her pets when she's apart for more than 12 hours. But travel's not the only thing made better with pets...
I wish I could say someone appreciated my 'fashion' but it's hard to be even a moment of focus when you're rubbing shoulders with some of the most inspiring innovators in pet-human relations and welfare. And did I mention that Nora got to share sidewalk with Pet-Celebs like Turbo Roo and Winnie the Therapy Dog? Of course I'd be lying if I said we didn't get our fair share of attention- having this maltese-yorkie cutie on your arm all night is the perfect ice breaker!
URI NYC, in partnership with Purina, has actually helped create one of a kind urban facilities that are not only pet friendly (fur, paws, or scales) but pet safe for victims of domestic violence. And safe doesn't just mean for the pet, but private, clean, maintained, sheltered areas in the middle of a sprawling urban city, where pets can be walked and recreate without fear of compromising the owner's location or identity. Because pets are part of the family, and a family should never have to be broken up as a compromise for safety.
As the second panel of the day, How A Passion For Pets Builds A Better World illuminated- we, as a society benefit from the human-pet bond in immeasurable ways we don't always detect until that connection is removed or forbidden. In a heartwarming presentation we took a sneak peek inside the St. Louis Children's Hospital where an innovative pet-to-pateint program has been unveiled. This one of a kind program goes beyond the typical 'animal patient therapy' to actually unite patients with their own beloved pets, in a safe, regulated environment for the day. This was followed by insight from Brent Bauer, Research Director of Integrative Medicine and Health Programs (Mayo Clinic), who shared a vision where someday '15 minutes with a cat might actually be a written prescription."
And 'living big' correlates directly with the day's final panel, The Science of Innovative Nutrition For Pets, which introduced a new term to me, therapeutic nutrition. The concept elaborated that what one feeds their pets can directly impact the pet's current physical and mental capacity beyond basic energy and weight. Did you know that their are prescription based Purina formulations designed to treat conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes in cats? In fact, that particular formulation has had success in curing Type 2 Feline Diabetes! Even more exciting, the brand's Pro Plan Bright Mind dog food formulation to help enhance the lifestyle of Senior dogs, has inspired a soon to be released feline formulation for cats 7+ that has, in studies, extended the life expectancy of cats by up to a year!
While I think the day was more about pampering and networking for Nora, I walked away thinking about how I could help inspire my own networks to live bigger with pets. Nora's much too hyper to be a hospital therapy dog- but we do have a local women's shelter I've volunteered at in the past. I'm definitely going to meet with the director and see if we can brainstorm a foster program for pets of women and families in transitional housing. I really felt Purina's work with URI is going to make a huge impact on both the lives of pets and owners going through some really hard times.
Are you inspired too? Share, on social media, how your pet inspires you to live big with the hashtag #LetsliveBig and follow the brand on Twitter and Instagram @Purina!
What Daughter Says: Living big is easy with pets beside us!