Psychological Needs Filled by Avian Companions

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Abstract:

Pets are immensely popular in this country. However, the complex nature of human-animal interactions and the importance of these animals in everyday lives are not yet thoroughly understood. The human psychological needs that pet birds fulfill are even less understood than the role of other pets, such as dogs and cats. To compile a list of psychological needs filled by avian companions, 80 bird owners were asked to complete a survey that explored the nature of their relationships with their birds in everyday situations. Results revealed that avian companions most often filled human social needs, followed to a lesser degree by esteem and cognitive needs. The profile of human psychological needs filled by pet birds provides additional rationale and criteria for the use of pet birds in animal-assisted therapy and pet visitation programs.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2752/089279393787002204

Publication date: September 1, 1993

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