More than four in 10 people adopt a dog (or cat) as a kind of test run to see if they’re ready to have a human baby, according to a survey of 2,000 people run by OnePoll, a market research company. The parenting doesn’t end with the adoption. The poll found that the same proportion of pet adopters celebrate Mother’s Day or Father’s Day with their animals, and almost 30 percent throw them birthday parties. Additionally, more than two in 10 watch television shows with them.
Perhaps the biggest sign that parenting a dog is a dry run for parenting a human is that almost half the people surveyed worry that their pet is having irregular bowel movements or that the bowel movements have an irregular consistency. Just like with our human babies, we are intent on making sure our dogs’ digestive systems are working properly.