Your Furry Friends Benefit Your Health, too!

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Recently, I have been trying to make a case to adopt a dog and extend my family of two to a family of three. I tried for months to down play the responsibility and added expense of caring for a pet, but none of it worked.

My winning argument, surprisingly, was tied to the health benefits of owning a pet. Before my research on the topic, I was unaware that pets do indeed increase healthy living in several ways.

Here are Six Top Health Benefits to Owning a Pet…

  1. Stress Relief – Pets are great listeners! Recent research shows, when conducting a task that is stressful, people experienced less stress when their pets were present compared to a close friend or spouse. Everyone can do with a little stress relief now and then.
  2. Social Circle Grows – Socializing is not only necessary for a well-trained pet; self-confidence and communication skills of pet-owners also benefit enormously from a thriving social circle.  No matter where you go with a pet, you will most likely get attention. Many say a pet even does wonders for their love life! I don’t think I’d use your pet boa constrictor as a wingman, however.
  3. Pets for Every Age – Studies show no matter your age, dogs and cats prove to be great companions for your health. As a child being around dogs and cats can build immunity to pet hair and dander. Also, “Alzheimer’s patients have fewer anxious burst if there is an animal in the home, says Lynette Hart PH.D., associate professor at the University of California at Davis School of Veterinary Medicine (as reported on WebMD.com).
  4. Good for the Mind – Study after study has shown that pets reduce depression among adults. For people suffering with AIDS, pets can act as a strong source of comfort. For people without a disease, cuddling or playing with a pet can often eases the mind from personal troubles.
  5. They Protect You – Pets with a strong intuitive nature or great reaction skills can often save people in life or death situations. Like a woman in Massachusetts this week; she was walking her two dogs when the three walked over downed power lines. One of her dogs was unfortunately killed by the electricity, but the other pulled her away from the lines and barked to signal help was needed!
  6. More Fun and More Exercise – Having a pet is a lot of responsibility; pets like dogs require a lot of energy release. By playing with or walking a pet can benefit you as well as your furry friend. Not only does it force you to stay active and get in shape, but the exercise also releases endorphins in your brain that physically make you happy!
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