PetSmart Charities Gives Grant to Pet Care Trust to Bolster Pets in the Classroom Program
Small animals like hamsters are popular classroom pets.
The Pet Care Trust recently received a $25,000 grant from PetSmart Charities, designed to improve the quality of life and education of students through the Trust’s Pets in the Classroom grant program. The program provides grants to pre-kindergarten through ninth-grade teachers in both private and public schools for the purpose of purchasing and maintaining classroom pets.
Studies have found that pets have the ability to bring humans comfort, reduce stress and anxiety, and provide unconditional love. In a recent survey commissioned by PetSmart Charities and conducted by Wakefield Research, 94 percent of Americans surveyed agreed with the statement: “Pets are essential for people to maintain good physical and mental health.”
This holds true in the classroom as well. According to several studies as well as thousands of teachers’ experiences, classroom pets provide a variety of benefits to students as they: aid in improving school attendance, build self-esteem, promote empathy, teach responsibility, stimulate learning, enrich the classroom experience and become friends. One pet can help shy kids open up, slower readers build confidence, rough children become nurturing and uninterested students acquire a new desire for learning.
“With this grant, Pets in the Classroom will be able to provide 250 teachers with funding to purchase and maintain a classroom pet, impacting the lives of 10,000 students,” said Steve King, executive director of the Pet Care Trust. “It will help expand our reach at a time when more teachers than ever before are seeking a classroom pet. We are immensely grateful to PetSmart Charities for their support and understanding of the importance of this program.”