Are pets good for your health?

Time to read: 4 mins

Pets can bring great comfort and companionship to their owners. In many ways, pets can help us to live much healthier lives. Research shows that owning a pet is good for you both mentally and physically.

They are a great motivator for people. Dogs especially are great at encouraging owners to get out and about, exercise, and socialise. This can be extremely beneficial for those suffering from depression and anxiety.

Dog licks owner

According to one study from 2017 reported on by the Mother Nature Network for instance, having a dog could lower the risk of death from cardiovascular disease or other causes. This piece of research followed 3.4 million individuals, men and women aged between 40 and 80 years old.  Once all the research was compiled, it was found that individuals who lived by themselves but had a dog were able to reduce their risk to death in general by 33%, as well as their risk of death due to a cardiovascular-related issue by 36%, when compared to those who lived alone and without a pet.

Pets can also have calming effects on their owner. Just by stroking, sitting next to or playing with a pet can give owners a chance to relax and calm their minds. Caring for a pet also gives your day purpose and reward, and a sense of achievement. It also helps you feel valuable and needed.

Cat paw

Walking a dog often leads to conversations with other dog owners, promoting long term friendships and on occasions relationships. Helping owners to stay socially connected and less withdrawn. People who have more social relationships and friendships tend to be mentally healthier. With an animal in the home, people with Alzheimer’s are thought to have fewer anxious outbursts.

Children can be calmed when pets are around them also. It’s also widely believed that pets can help with social behaviour in children.  A pet is a great listener and offers unconditional love and will not criticise a child for having too much energy. This can aid a child’s self-confidence.

More good reasons for owning a pet.

If you are thinking of getting a new pet why not visit your local pet rescue centre to help a pet in need of care and attention.

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