The loyalty of a pet is legendary. Take Hachiko, the Akita who returned to the same train station at the same time for nine years after his owner’s death, hoping to greet him again. After Hachi’s death, a statue was built in his honor. No matter how the world treats or perceives you, to your pet you are everything. But far too often many pet family members some how lose their value and are discarded, dropped off at a shelter or just let out the back door. We all understand how extreme life circumstances may cause some people to give up a beloved pet. But that's not always the case. I have equated this behavior with the lack of loyalty that people show with… people. That being said, what chance do animals have? My goal as an animal lover and advocate is to increase the chances of an animal experiencing a wonderful life, which naturally enriches the lives of people as well. We all need to think long and hard before making the decision to give up our pets. With nine million unwanted animals each year in the U.S. alone, shelters and rescues can only be so successful in finding them loving homes. If your pet has behavioral issues, seek a good animal behaviorist. If you can’t afford a trainer, reach out to rescues and shelters for help. If you are thinking of moving to where they don’t accept pets (don’t get me started), think about moving somewhere else. I have found that through life’s hardships, it’s loyal friends, family and pets, that make all the difference, creating a depth of appreciation for what is real in our lives. True values, like loyalty to pets and people, stand the test of time and should be treasured and honored.