Attachment to Companion Animals Among Older Pet Owners

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Psychometric properties are examined in a pet-attachment index used in a national probability survey of households including at least one resident aged 65 or older. Cronbach's alpha for the overall scale was 0.58, indicating low but acceptable internal reliability. Internal structure was evaluated using principal-components analysis. Two factors were identified. Responses to individual questions in the index were associated with a number of respondent characteristics, including type of pet owned and gender and identity of primary caregiver. The results support the need for further work to develop a reliable and valid pet-attachment index for use in studies of the potential beneficial effects of owning companion animals.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 1988

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