February might be known for Valentine's Day, President's Day, and the Super Bowl. But another very important day falls in this month, National Love Your Pet Day.

Typically, I'm not the biggest "National Whatever Day" fan, but we are talking about pets here. They are the single greatest thing that God or the aliens created. Whether it's that dog by your side, or an apathetic cat, perhaps a cute bunny, goldfish, some sort of rodent, or maybe a bird, pets give owner's unfettered joy that lasts forever.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, pets can actually improve the health and wellbeing of their owners. Studies have shown that pets can help decrease an owner's blood pressure, cholesterol levels, anxiety, loneliness, and even symptoms of PTSD. Pet owners also tend to get more exercise and improved cognitive function.

Mainers clearly know the benefits, because our pet ownership numbers are some of the highest in the country. According to WorldPopulationReview.com, Maine ranks as the 11th highest state overall, with a pet owner percentage of 63.5. The only New England state with a higher percentage is Vermont at 70%, good enough for 4th overall.

Maine really shines when it comes to our feline friends. Our state ranks as the 2nd highest state for cat ownership at 43.8%. This only trails Vermont, who leads the nation with a 44.6 percentage rate.

That's a lot of cats.


I'm not surprised to see this being a cat state. Heck, my wife and I own four of them. And if we didn't have more willpower, it would probably be 10.

Cats are so unique. They are somehow quirky, apathetic, vulnerable, hilarious, bipolar, possessive, and curious all at the same time. And that is more than likely happening at 2am. But if you get it, you get it. For some reason, there is a weird allure of this psychotic behavior that simply puts a smile on all of us cat lovers' faces, even when those cats might be plotting to kill you.


Maine lags farther behind when it comes to dog ownership, with a 35.9 percentage rate. That's good enough for just 35th in the nation. However, it is good enough to be the highest ranked state in New England.

I love that I live in a state that cares so much about our furry friends. And, as always, if you are looking for a pet, I strongly suggest visiting a shelter or rescue first. Our most vulnerable pets are always the most loving.

Make sure you give your pet(s) a nice big hug for "National Love Your Pet Day." Or just do it, because you love your pet.

You're Breaking The Law In Maine If You Have Any Of These Animals As Pets

Stick to the cats and dogs that you know because if you're keeping any of these animals (or animals like them) as pets in Maine, you're breaking the law and could face stiff penalties.

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Here is a list of the 25 animals that are classified as endangered in Maine. These, along with species that are "threatened" in Maine can be found on the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife website.

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