An apple a day may or may not actually keep the doctor away, but what about an animal a day? That’s a different story – when it comes to pet ownership, there are a number of proven health benefits for people, including physical, mental and emotional improvements. From enhancing social skills to decreasing a person’s risk of heart attack.
- Dogs don’t just fill your heart; they actually make it stronger. Having a canine companion is linked to lower blood pressure, reduced cholesterol and decreased triglyceride levels, which contribute to better overall cardiovascular health and fewer heart attacks. Dog owners who do have heart attacks have better survival rates following the events.
- Pets provide some consistency to our lives. Caring for a pet can significantly affect our routine and gives us something to do and look forward to each day.
- Dog owners are way more likely to get the recommended amount of exercise per week than non- dog owners. People love being outside with their dog and helps them to be more active, which can also lead to help you lose weight.
- Decreased blood pressure and reduced stress levels have been shown when a dog is present.
- Children often turn to their pet for comfort if a friend or family member dies or leaves the family. Grieving adults who did not have a close source of human support were also found to have less depression if they had a pet.
- Pet owners tend to feel less afraid of being a victim of crime when walking with a dog or having a dog in the home.
- Pets can help us relax and focus our attention away from our problems and worries
- Dogs can lift our mood and make us feel less lonely. They decrease our feelings of loneliness and isolation by providing companionship to all generations.
- As we age, it becomes harder to get out and meet people. Dog owners tend to speak with other dog owners during walks. Dog owners in particular, tend to be a little more extroverted or outgoing. When you start to engage them about their companion animal, people tend to open up and really blossom because they want to share stories about their favourite friend.
- Dogs create a sense of closeness and well- being. Families surveyed before and after they acquired a pet reported feeling happier after adding a pet to the family.
- Dogs can promote interaction. Residents in long- term care facilities were more likely to attend activity sessions when an animal was going to be present.