Contemporary Psychology, Vol. 19, No. 2, 2016, 217-233


Socioemotional Context of Attachment to Pets

Jelena Ombla - Department of Psychology, University of Zadar, Zadar
Zvjezdan Penezić - Department of Psychology, University of Zadar, Zadar
Marina Vidaković - Department of Psychology, University of Zadar, Zadar

Fulltext (croatian, pages 217-233).pdf

Pets are a global phenomenon and represent an inevitable part of everyday life for more than half of the human population. The purpose of pet ownership isn’t explicitly defined, the exact role of pet owner isn’t socially expected, and that makes this research area scientifically intriguing. Research shows that people highly value their pets, especially when it comes to pet dogs, considering them as family members and connecting with them in close affectional bonds. Taking care of pet dogs represents a functional and useful resource for humans, almost as a separate social provision. Lately, research on the characteristics of human-pet animal companionship has focused on exploring the elements of attachment in this relationship. Determinants of quality of close relations seem to have an important role in the development of attachment to pets, while action mechanisms on human well-being need to be explored further. Generally, it seems like some personal characteristics of pet owners, from socioemotional functioning to attitudes and value orientations, could be relevant in defining the quality as well as the outcome implications of human-animal companionship.

pets, socioemotional context, attachment

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