AVMA Auxiliary promotes exercise for National Pet Week

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The Auxiliary to the AVMA is celebrating "Pets and People—Healthy Together" during National Pet Week 2010, May 2-8.

Pet owner running with dog along a shorelineThe Auxiliary chose this year's theme to promote the importance of exercise for people and pets, said Ginger Morton, the Auxiliary's vice president for public relations.

The purpose of National Pet Week is to foster responsible pet ownership, recognize the human-animal bond, and increase public awareness of veterinary medicine. The AVMA and Auxiliary founded the event in 1981, and the celebration has spread throughout the United States. The AVMA continues to support the event.

In advance of National Pet Week 2010, the Auxiliary held its annual poster and creative writing contests. Morton said the Auxiliary received hundreds of entries from across the country.

Lydia Edlin of Athens, Texas, won the grand prize of $300 in the poster contest. Her poster, which she submitted in early 2009 when she was in fourth grade, appears on the cover of this issue.

Sara Craven of Whitefish, Mont., won the $300 grand prize in the writing contest. She submitted her winning poem, "Pets & People," early last year as a fourth-grader.

Pets & People

It seems like forever,
That people and pets have lived healthily together,
You and your pet can go on evening walks,
It's even helpful to give it long talks.
Living alone is no fun,
So get a pet to play in the sun.
Feed your pet to keep it strong,
And if you don't it's just plain wrong.
Take your pet for a swim in the lake,
Or let it mend your heartache.
So go get a pet today,
You have nothing to lose anyway.

Along with the poster and creative writing contests, the Auxiliary promotes National Pet Week with items ranging from bookmarks to banners. An order form plus entry forms for the 2011 contests are available on the Auxiliary's Web site at www.avmaaux.org under "National Pet Week."

"Save a Life—Adopt a Pet" is the theme for National Pet Week 2011. March 15 is the deadline for the 2011 poster and creative writing contests.