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Kiwis asked to support new pet health research

14 November 2019

Kiwis asked to support new research to improve lives of future generations of pets

New Zealand animal lovers are being asked to dig deep to support important research not funded by the Government that seeks to improve the lives of future generations of Kiwi pets and their owners.

Healthy Pets New Zealand (HPNZ) is a charity that funds research into the big health issues facing New Zealand companion animals, such as canine hip dysplasia, cancer, and antibiotic resistance.

Founded as the Companion Animal Health Foundation in 1988, HPNZ is being re-launched on Saturday 16 November at the Wellington Pet and Animal Expo 2019, and with a gold coin donation dog walk near Invercargill.

HPNZ is run by a team of volunteer veterinary professionals supported by the New Zealand Veterinary Association, along with generous donations from supporters, says Director Cath Watson.

"There is little public funding to support research into companion animal health and welfare in New Zealand. That’s why we’re calling on Kiwis who care about pets to get behind this important work.

"As veterinary professionals, we care deeply about the health and welfare of companion animals. We know that New Zealand pet owners do too, so we’re asking them to support the work we do."

Healthy Pets New Zealand funds outcome focused research that leads to real benefits for Kiwi pets and their owners, including new diagnostic methods, better treatment options and improved care.

HPNZ recently broadened its funding criteria to include sociological research into the human-pet bond, in recognition of the important role played by pets in the lives of so many New Zealanders.

"Ninety-five per cent of Kiwi pet owners see their companion animals as part of the family. We hope they will donate generously so that we can fund more research into the issues that matter to them.

HPNZ is supported by veterinary clinics, including the Vet Centre Marlborough, Waikiwi Vets (Invercargill), and Tauranga Vets. With their clients, each has made generous donations to HPNZ.

"I’d like to thank our generous supporters, who have enabled us to fund diverse research, which has increased veterinary science knowledge and led to better care and health for Kiwi pets," says Cath.

Cath Watson says she hopes many more clinics, and animal lovers will support HPNZ in the future.

"The more we raise, the bigger impact we can have. That’s why we’re asking Kiwis who care to donate today. It doesn’t matter if it’s one dollar or a thousand dollars - every last cent counts."

Kiwis who want to help improve the lives of pets in New Zealand can donate online via Give-a-little.

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