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Responsible Pet Ownership

As an organisation it is our aim to promote responsible pet ownership through everything we do. As a pet owner it is not enough to simply care about our pets - we also have to provide everything our pet needs.

Responsible pet ownership involves Neutering, micro-chipping, annual vaccinations, veterinary care and flea and worm treatment, as well as the requirements listed below. All of these things are essential for an animal to remain happy and healthy.

Under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, an owner must provide their pet with the following:

Behaviour - a pet should be allowed to express normal behaviour depending on the species and breed. For example, rabbits need enough space to hop around, play and graze; dogs must have access to exercise and play

Companionship - an animal should be housed either alone or with other animals, as per the suitability of the species or breed. For example, where possible rabbits should be housed with other rabbits as companions

Diet - an animal should be fed a healthy and appropriate diet, including constant access to fresh, clean water

Environment - a pet should be provided with a safe environment which allows appropriate room for the animal to exercise and move around

Health - a pet has a right to receive proper veterinary treatment, and in a timely manner, for illness and injury

For more information on responsible pet ownership please see these animal care pages, which offer helpful advice on all your pet needs.

Pet Insurance

We highly recommend all pet owners purchase pet insurance as you never know when illness or injury will strike. Vet bills for operations or for long-term care can be very costly. With insurance all you need to pay is your monthly fee and, if you need to make a claim, the excess agreed when you take out the policy.

It's important to correctly research pet insurance rather than just buying the cheapest out there as they are not all equal. There are different kinds of insurance and they offer differing levels of cover. Ensure you read all the fine print as some policies will only cover an illness for a set period of time, such as 1 year - not very useful if your dog is diagnosed with a long-term illness such as diabetes. Other policies will cover illness and injury up to a certain amount of money, then it is no longer covered. Covered for Life policies are the most comprehensive around.

Also be aware that if you change insurance providers, pre-existing conditions will not be covered under your new provider.  Pet insurance can be a bit of a minefield but with a bit of research you will be able to find the perfect policy for you.