More than half of the world's inhabitants own at least one pet.
In the United States and Latin America, the dog is the most popular. Russians and French prefer cats, Chinese fish, and Turks birds.
A huge market that is supposed to meet the smallest needs of pets has grown. It actually targets their owners who tend to project their own lifestyles onto their animals.
What is a pet ?
A pet is animal receiving human protection in exchange for his presence. Most of these animals were subject to a domestication (genetic selection to meet his needs).
A member of the family
The pet (especially the dog or the cat) is increasingly seen as a full member of the family.
It is true that it decreases the stress, anxiety and boredom of its owners. It promotes the development of children and provides comfort to the elderly. It participates in the social integration of isolated people and contributes to leisure time and better physical health.
Granting unconditional love for life, without demanding anything in return, and forgiving everything, the animal responds perfectly to our quest for the absolute on an emotional level.
Studies have shown that children are often closer to their pets than their siblings.
A way of life more and more human
We treat them like humans. We project on them our ways of life or our needs.
Pets and their primary or supposed needs have become a market of more than 55 billion euros worldwide (5 billion euros in France). A doubling is expected within five years.
More and more of us are looking for a purebred animal and paying the price (50% of "purchases" of dogs and 26% of cats).
Encouraged by advertising, thehumanization affects all areas:
- thefood : pet food is more and more sophisticated. There is something for all tastes, all seasons and all animals. Human fashions (regal, no gluten, etc.) are immediately transposed to the domestic animal market.
- the health expenses have increased sharply. This mainly concerns veterinary expenses, but also psychotropic drugs. Millions of dog and cat tranquilizers are sold each year in the United States to provide relief to the most "neurotic" animals.
- the beauty products (shampoos, anti-dandruff, coloring, etc.), toys or furniture (beds and sofas) are not left out.
This tendency to anthropomorphism sometimes takes irrational proportions.
Psychologists, gymnastics clubs, dating sites (Petfinder.com), television channel (Dog TV), cosmetic surgery, spa hotels have become common in the United States and Japan. In these countries, as in England or Germany, it happens that the pet inherits the heritage of its owner.
It is true that animals are fully-fledged beings capable of interacting positively with human behavior and development. Nevertheless, the emotional transfer, exploited excessively by the companies of the "Pets economy", can run the risk of a withdrawal into oneself and a gradual abandonment of human socialization, which is much more demanding.
Conversely, some think that taking care of the well-being of an animal makes us more human ...