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Pet Night on Capitol Hill Delivers the Message: Pets are Important to Our Health and Well-Being

Pets’ Best Friend awards were handed out.




(Press Release) WASHINGTON, DC – The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) and the Pet Leadership Council (PLC) brought the power of pets to Congress at Pet Night on Capitol Hill. At a packed event, senators and representatives heard from the pet care community that pets and pet-friendly policies are important for human health and quality of life.

“Pet Night provides the opportunity to remind our elected representatives that more than 80 million U.S. households have pets, and there is growing scientific evidence that pet ownership leads to improved health and better quality of life for both people and animals,” said Bob Vetere, PLC and HABRI chairman. “Research has shown that pets support child health and development, promote healthy aging, improve heart health, and also help families dealing with cancer, autism, and PTSD.”

Guests at Pet Night had the opportunity to interact with registered therapy animals and experience first-hand their power to relive stress and bring people together. They also heard from pet care industry leaders, the veterinary community, animal welfare advocates, research organizations, and Members of Congress about the importance of pet ownership in America.

The Pet Leadership Council and HABRI also conferred Pets’ Best Friend awards on more than a dozen members of Congress for their support for pet-friendly legislation.

The Cutest Pets on Capitol Hill were honored by the Animal Health Institute for the 10th year in a row, recognizing Congressional companions from both sides of the aisle.

The pet care community supports bipartisan legislation that taps into the power of the human-animal bond to heal and to help, including measures to provide service dogs to veterans with post-traumatic stress and to help survivors of domestic violence find safe shelter for their pets.


“We hope Members of Congress will support these important policies that will protect and save lives through the power of the human-animal bond,” Vetere added.

Pet Night on Capitol Hill is an annual event. For more information, visit


At Pet Night on Capitol Hill, senators and representatives heard from the pet care community that pets and pet-friendly policies are important for human health and quality of life. JOHN HARRINGTON PHOTOGRAPHY



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