Pets aren’t just our faithful friends; they’re also amazing for our health. Whether you own a dog, cat or smaller animal such as a rabbit or hamster, being around them will undoubtedly boost your health levels. Read on to find out what having a furry friend in your life could do for you…
Lower Stress levels
A study published by the State University of New York in 2002 found that people undertaking stressful tasks were less stressed out by the activity when they were with their pets than when they were with a close family member, friend or partner!
Lower Blood Pressure
Having a pet, especially a dog is a great way of lowering your blood pressure, especially if you suffer from hypertension. This is probably down to stress levels being reduced when you have your pet with you, but further research is required to work out exactly why the presence of a pet can have such an effect.
It might sound hard to believe, but pets can actually help to ease chronic pain like that suffered when you have arthritis, back issues or a migraine problem. Your pet helps to lower your anxiety levels, which enables you to relax a little more and that stops you from focusing so much on your pain, which means that it doesn’t feel quite so bad. Basically, pets are like living breathing valium without any of the negative side-effects.
Lower Cholesterols Levels
The US Center for Disease Control state that owning a pet can help to lower cholesterol levels, particularly in men. It’s not clear whether it is the pets themselves who have this effect or whether pet owners are likely to be more active walking dogs, etc., but whatever the reason, the effect is very real!
Owning a pet gives you a richer mental and emotional life. Even if you don’t have a lot of support from the people in your life, you can always rely on your pet to be there for you in times of need, so it isn’t surprising that owning a pet can help to boost your mood.
What’s more, stroking a dog or cat, or playing a game with them, can release serotonin and dopamine -both of which help to make humans feel happier.
Having a pet around will also help to stave off loneliness, which is a major factor in mental health issues such as depression and anxiety, and all they ask for is a little dry dog food or catnip in return!
Prevent Stroke and Heart Attack.
Another huge health benefit of having a pet is preventing strokes. In fact, if you own a cat or dog you are 40 percent less likely to have a stroke and 30percent less likely to havea heart attack. If you do suffer from either of these issues, your pet will help you to recover faster too!
Put simply, pets are truly amazing! There are few people who would not benefit from loving and being loved by an animal companion.