U.S. American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Endorses One Health

     Provided to One Health Initiative team October 5, 2011

“The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) strongly believes that pet ownership provides many emotional and physical health benefits to humans. Studies show that people are more likely to exercise with their pets than by themselves or with others. Additionally, pets have been known to lower their owner’s blood pressure, provide companionship for the elderly, and serve as a therapeutic outlet for those suffering from post-traumatic stress. 

AAHA supports the One Health Initiative as we believe the benefits of having a pet in one’s life far outweighs any potential risks such as the uncommon incidence of zoonotic diseases.  This is especially true when the pet receives proper wellness care from their veterinarian which also helps curtail the presence of communicable diseases to humans by reducing their presence in companion animals, e.g. internal parasite therapy and rabies vaccinations.  In addition, practicing veterinarians routinely provide educational advice that helps prevent pet owners from having unnecessary exposures to various unlikely but potential risks.

By working together to educate people about proper pet wellness care, veterinarians and physicians can focus on the many positive and life-enriching benefits gained through the companionship of a pet.  Broad understanding and acceptance of best practices for pet healthcare will allow the human-animal bond to flourish, thereby improving the quality of life for people and their pets.”

Michael T. Cavanaugh, DVM, DABVP
Executive Director
American Animal Hospital Association 
12575 W. Bayaud Ave.
Lakewood, CO 80228 (USA)

Note: Today AAHA serves approximately 5,500 practice teams in the U.S. and Canada, over half of which are accredited, comprised of more than 50,000 veterinary care providers. AAHA has established a reputation for its dedication to professional development, hospital accreditation standards, and excellent education programs.