Dr. Marty Becker is the popular veterinary contributor to ABC-TV's Good Morning America. His weekly column “The Bond” is distributed by Knight Ridder Tribune Services. He is a contributing editor for Dog Fancy and Cat Fancy magazine and is the chief veterinary correspondent for Amazon.com. In this inspirational work, Becker explains the many ways animals are enriching the health and well-being of individuals in a variety of settings. The book is divided into three sections: "The Healing Power of Pets," "The Pet Prescription," and "Deepening the Bond."
All of us are familiar with the ways in which pets can help us to calm down, combat depression, and spur us to increased exercise. Becker also presents fascinating accounts of pets who can sniff out cancers; help patients fight chronic pain; provide therapy for people with physical, psychological, cognitive, social and behavioral problems; and give nursing home residents a boost with their animated presence.
Sometimes a pet is just what the doctored ordered. It is estimated that 114 million Americans report no daily physical exercise whatsoever. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention calls physical inactivity the major underlying cause of dying before one's time. Pets (especially dogs) are just what the doctor ordered they get people moving. Walking the dog every day may save your life. The pet prescription is not only good for your health; it is a nurturance that stimulates mind, body, and soul.
In the last section, Becker offers suggestions for getting the most out of your relationship with an animal. There are quizzes to help you determine your pet's potential as a house pet, a companion animal, a show animal, or one that can do tricks. He also includes a health checklist and a list of organizations and associations, and a bibliography.