Are we over-pampering our pets?

- Sure we love our pets. How much? Enough where New York City tap water just won't do. It is spring water, hand-fed. Three-quarters of Americans in their 30s have dogs. More than 50 percent have cats. Millennials are half as likely as their parents to be married or live with a partner. All this means what was man's best friend is also becoming their children.

With our love of pets comes a whole basket of cray-cray. By cray-cray we mean the goodies. The pet goods industry has tripled in the last two decades into a $63 billion-a-year business. Most pets have nicer costumes than their humans. And babies in a box compared with a pets' stroller - check this - runs $400! Shipping better be included.

Carrying pets around and feeding them human food from the table, forms of pet pampering, not so pampering if obesity and anxiety set in.

Dr. Alana Redfern is a vet at Blue Pearl in Forest Hills, Queens. Our model Charlie is in shape but a lot of well-pampered pets can't say the same. Dr. Redfern says many of her patients aren't getting the exercise they need.

Experts say habits like feeding pets human food when we eat creates anxiety in our pets. They start wondering if it is go time every time the fridge opens. Lindsay, like us, thought not feeding from the table was just good manners, while pampering put Sam's dog in the hospital.

It may seem like we're making over-pampering out to be a bad word. But here is good news. Experts say over-pampering is always a good thing provided we think in the mindset of what is best for the pet, and not what I - the human being - want for the pet.

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