Most people in the United States living with companion animals consider them family members (GfK Roper, 2009), however little is known about what this means. This study explores the beliefs about and experiences with companion animals of 12 men from various ethnic and social class groups, national origins, and geographic settings. Findings include that most men considered their pets to be members of the family, though not necessarily on a par with human members. Men's attitudes and relationships appeared to vary by race/ethnicity, social class, type of geographic community, and national origin. Implications are offered for social work practice and research so that social workers might develop more accurate assessments and effective interventions by taking these relationships into account.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)