Your Child’s Best Friend: The Family Dog

As a nation of pet lovers, the medical health of our pets is an utmost priority, but how do you cover the costs while ensuring they receive the care they deserve?

With a pet population of 58 million animals, almost half of the UK’s 12 million households have pets. That’s according to Pets At Home’s Pet Report which surveyed 2,438 pet owners in 2015 and it’s an awful lot of squeaking, tweeting, scratching and swimming round and round.

But how much of that is barking and meowing? Well, according to the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA), the UK has an estimated population of 8.9 million pet dogs and 11.1 million pet cats, which certainly in the case of dogs, accounts for a lot of miles walked. And that can only be good for dog owners – and their children.

So Why Do We Keep Pets?

Getting out and about is just one great way of enriching our children’s lives. But, according to The Daily Telegraph, there are plenty more reasons we take on a pet:


Sharing our lives with our pet companions has always been a source of comfort.

Making Friends

Pets, and dogs in particular, are one of the most valuable means of social interaction you can have; not just relating to how you or your kids interact with the animal itself, but also in the fact that people are more likely to interact with you when you’re with an animal.

Peace of Mind

It doesn’t matter how big a dog is, unwanted visitors think twice about calling when they can hear a pooch is in residence.

Health and Wellbeing

Pets are as great for psychological health as they are for physical health, according to the Pets at Home report – and that includes having a lasting, positive effect on children. Dr Carri Westgrath, Epidemiology and Population Researcher at Liverpool University, says, “Generally, if you own a dog, you are more physically active.” In an age of ever-increasing screen use, that’s a good thing – for both adults and children.

Not only that, studies carried out by Mustard Research also show that children who grow up around animals are less prone to allergies later in life.

Fresh Air. Exercise. What More Could You Want?

As well as all the above, together with a boost for your child’s immune system, what could be better for the family?

Well, keeping the happy dog in good health is a great start. Because no matter how much undivided attention, love and care your family give, dogs are just like us in some respects; they get poorly. And sometimes, they get into scrapes and have accidents. Which means they often need medical attention and these days that can end up costing a lot of money.

Well Worth Knowing

Luckily, there are reputable companies providing pet insurance policies, that whilst they won’t prevent your pooch getting poorly in the first place, can prevent a vet’s bill punching a gaping hole in your bank balance – and help prevent further illness.

Co-op Insurance is no exception. Since 1867, Co-op Insurance has been looking after the things that matter to families and now, provide a range of cost-effective pet insurance policies to suit today’s dog and cat owners’ needs – although, it’s worth knowing pre-existing medical conditions won’t be covered.

You can find out more at, but there’s no doubt, the right pet insurance policy can save you a great deal of money – and difficult decisions – in the long run.

In fact, as recently as 2017, for the first time, more than 1 million claims were made for pets according to Money Saving Expert, with pet insurers paying out a whopping £775 million in total.

Which is fine for the 3.7 million households with an insurance policy. But, astonishingly, given the cost of an average individual vet bill, which reached a high of £757 in 2017, there are still 8.2 million pet-owning households that are still uninsured.

Making the Right Decision is Easy

And when you think of all that fun, love and enrichment your pet is bringing into the family home, it’s hard to imagine having to make the decision to give them the right treatment based on whether you can afford it. Especially given the range of pet insurance available in the UK. You can find out more here.

This article has been an advertising feature for Co-op Pet Insurance. Pet insurance from Co-op Insurance Services is provided, underwritten and administered by Allianz Insurance plc. Applicants for insurance are subject to normal underwriting criteria.Co-op Insurance Services is a trading name of Co-op Insurance Services Limited; registered in England and Wales with registration number 4390. Registered office: CIS Building, Miller Street, Manchester M60 0AL.

You might also like

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and get
• FREE Competitions
• FREE Digital Magazines
• HOME and FAMILY News
And much more…

You have Successfully Subscribed!