As veterinarians, we’re often lucky to witness the importance of the human-animal bond in our workplaces. Lawmakers in our nation’s capital usually don’t have the same opportunity—but that changes each year on Pet Night, an annual event on Capitol Hill celebrating the important roles that pets play in our lives. This week’s Pet Night, which was cosponsored by the AVMA, was another successful event showcasing the value of pets to Congress.
AVMA staff members and congressional fellows attended the 2017 Pet Night to provide the veterinary perspective on the human-animal bond. Other attendees included members of Congress, industry leaders, the veterinary community, animal welfare advocates and research organizations.
At the event, Reps. Ted Yoho (R-Fla.) and Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.), both veterinarians, presented awards for “Cutest Pet on Capitol Hill.” Winners included a cat, a dog and a hedgehog. Reps. Yoho and Schrader also discussed the importance of veterinary medicine and the House Veterinary Caucus.
Thank you to the Human Animal Bond Research Institute and the Pet Leadership Council for sponsoring this event. We look forward to next year’s Pet Night—and in the meantime, we’ll continue providing veterinary expertise to lawmakers on pet ownership and promoting the importance of the human animal bond.