Why Pets Improve Health

The human-pet connection is real, especially when it comes to matters of health. However, did you know that it depends on the kind of pets you own? Your pets and your health are directly connected. The benefits of having pets is almost limitless. While our most popular domestic pets are fantastic companions, we do not share the same human-pet connection with animals of prey like rabbits. Animals bring so much love and joy to their human parents. However, it goes further when matters of the heart are concerned. Dogs improve health, for example. Research even suggests that you might live longer, depending on the type of pet you have and what your interactions are like as well. Let’s dive into the reasoning behind the human-pet connection and why they can be even better when it comes to mending our (physical) hearts.

Matters of the Heart

Did you know? Research may suggest that if you own a feline, your risk of having a heart attack is reduced by around 30% and your risk of stroke is reduced by 40%. According to the CDC, simply owning a pet could also lower your blood pressure and cholesterol. Those who are high-risk patients or hypersensitive could benefit greatly.

Physical Well-Being

Having that human-pet connection is not just about what is on the inside. By having a pet, your movement and physical activity are increased. If you’re a dog owner, you walking your dog can help you get your steps in for the day. What’s better? Walking your dog is free, gym memberships are not.

Less Stress

The bond between you and your pet lowers your stress and anxiety. By having a pet like a cat, dog, or rabbit, you are likely going to have comfort, joy, activity, and cuddles. Just owning a pet leads to your body releasing endorphins called oxytocin. The rise in calmness is even prevalent if you own pet fish. Just watching their smooth movements as they swim can calm you down and release the anti-stress chemical. Humans are also less stressed with work or stressful tasks when they have their pets present. If only every job would let us bring our pets to work!

Decreased Depression

Humans need a sense of purpose and to feel connected. Pets provide perfect companionship. Feeling connected decreases loneliness and it automatically brings joy into our lives. That’s why pets are so important to those who are suffering from depression and those who are sick or elderly. When veterans add a pet such as a service dog or emotional support pet, their mood and health are greatly improved. There are also many pet programs to reduce post-traumatic stress disorder. In fact, many programs encourage vets to get a service dog for companionship when entering back into civilian life. Even if you do not set out to own a pet for health reasons, you are still getting health benefits from your human-pet connection. You probably did not even think about these reasons. This list just goes to show, that whether you want a dog, a cat, a fish, or a bird, you are getting love and so much more out of pet ownership.

How do dogs improve your health?

Pets in general are known to help reduce loneliness and stress, thus, improving our overall health. Caring for a dog or any pet can reduce your chances of getting cardiovascular diseases. Dogs in particular also help keep their owners active and in shape.

Is it good to have a pet?

Yes. Unless you are severely allergic to pets, having a pet is a good thing. Aside from the happiness they bring you, there are also many health benefits to pet ownership.

Can pets improve mental health?

Animals, especially cats and dogs, are known to reduce stress levels, making their owners feel better. Aside from the calming effects that you get from petting animals, they can also help manage long-term mental health problem such as depression and anxiety.

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Written by Leo Roux

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