Home » United States » United States – Animal Welfare and Cultural Issues

United States – Animal Welfare and Cultural Issues

The United States is a country known for its diverse cultural practices and beliefs. Similarly, the attitude towards animals and pets also varies widely across different regions and communities. In this article, we will explore the prevailing attitude towards animals and pets in the United States, the laws surrounding pet ownership, major animal charities, pet supply stores, and any cultural taboos or sensitivities associated with different types of animals in the country.

Attitude towards Animals and Pets

The attitude towards animals and pets in the United States is generally positive, with many people considering their pets as a part of the family. Dogs and cats are the most common household pets in the country, with approximately 63.4 million households owning at least one dog and 42.7 million households owning at least one cat as of 2021, according to the American Pet Products Association. Other popular pets include birds, fish, and small animals such as rabbits, hamsters, and guinea pigs.

However, attitudes towards certain types of animals can vary depending on cultural and regional factors. For example, some people may have a negative view of snakes or spiders, while others may keep them as pets. Similarly, attitudes towards certain dog breeds can also vary, with some breeds being more popular in certain regions than others.

Laws Regarding Pet Ownership

The laws regarding pet ownership in the United States vary by state and local government. However, there are some common regulations that are enforced across the country. For example, all dogs must be licensed in most states, and some cities have breed-specific legislation that regulates the ownership of certain breeds of dogs.

Additionally, there are laws that protect animals from abuse and neglect. The Animal Welfare Act, which is enforced by the United States Department of Agriculture, regulates the treatment of animals used in research, exhibition, transport, and sale. The Humane Slaughter Act regulates the treatment of animals in slaughterhouses, and the Endangered Species Act protects threatened and endangered species from hunting and exploitation.

Major Animal Charities

There are numerous animal charities in the United States that work towards improving the welfare of animals. Some of the major animal charities include:


Get Our Best Articles Every Month!

Get our free moving abroad email course AND our top stories in your inbox every month


Unsubscribe any time. We respect your privacy - read our privacy policy.


  • The Humane Society of the United States: This is the largest animal protection organization in the country, with a mission to promote the protection of all animals. They work towards preventing cruelty, ending animal exploitation, and promoting responsible pet ownership.
  • American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA): This is the first animal welfare organization in the United States, founded in 1866. They work towards preventing animal cruelty and providing rescue and protection to animals in need.
  • Best Friends Animal Society: This organization works towards ending the killing of dogs and cats in shelters across the country. They provide adoption and spay/neuter services, as well as educational programs to promote responsible pet ownership.

Pet Supply Stores

There are numerous pet supply stores in the United States, both physical and online. Some of the most commonly available pet supply stores include:

  • Petco: This is one of the largest pet supply retailers in the country, with over 1,500 stores across the United States. They sell a wide range of products for dogs, cats, birds, fish, and small animals, including food, toys, and grooming supplies.
  • PetSmart: This is another popular pet supply retailer, with over 1,600 stores across the United States. They sell a wide range of products for pets, including food, toys, and grooming supplies.
  • Chewy: This is an online retailer that offers a wide range of pet products, including food, treats, toys, and accessories. They offer free shipping on orders over $49 and have a subscription service for recurring orders.

Cultural Taboos

In the United States, there are no major cultural taboos or sensitivities associated with different types of animals. However, there are some cultural differences in the ways that pets are treated and viewed.

For example, in some parts of the country, dogs are seen as members of the family and are treated accordingly, with many people allowing their dogs to sleep in their beds or ride in the car with them. In other parts of the country, dogs are viewed more as working animals or companions, and may be kept outside or in kennels.

There are also cultural differences in the ways that different types of pets are viewed. For example, cats are often viewed as independent and self-sufficient, while dogs are viewed as loyal and obedient. Some people also have strong preferences for certain types of animals, with some preferring dogs while others prefer cats or other animals.

Overall, the prevailing attitude towards animals and pets in the United States is one of love and affection, with many people considering their pets to be important members of their families. There are many laws and organizations in place to protect the welfare of animals, and pet ownership is widely accepted and encouraged throughout the country.


Latest Videos

Expat Focus Financial Update February 2024 #expat #expatlife

Expat Focus 28 February 2024 1:53 pm

This error message is only visible to WordPress admins

Important: No API Key Entered.

Many features are not available without adding an API Key. Please go to the YouTube Feed settings page to add an API key after following these instructions.