Human-animal interaction and the human-animal bond

Human-animal interaction a broad term that refers to any manner of relationship or behavior between people and animal(s). These interactions can vary widely and be positive, negative, or neutral for either party. They can occur in individual, community, or societal contexts. The veterinarian’s role in human- animal interaction is to minimize negative interactions and promote positive ones.

The human-animal bond is a mutually beneficial and dynamic relationship between people and animals that is influenced by behaviors considered essential to the health and well-being of both. This bond is beneficial to the mental, physical, and social health of people and animals. The veterinarian’s role in the human-animal bond is to maximize the potential of this relationship between people and animals and specifically to promote the health and well-being of both.

The AVMA officially recognizes: (1) the existence of the human-animal bond (2) its importance to human, animal and community health and welfare, and (3) that the human-animal bond has major significance for veterinary medicine. By strengthening the bond, the veterinary profession furthers both public and animal health and welfare.