people with pets laugh more often than those without pets
We call them man’s best friend for a reason. Did you know that having a dog offers you myriad benefits at any age or stage of life? It’s true, and there’s research that backs it up. Let’s look at 102 benefits of having a dog. I’ve divided them into categories so that you can filter through the list and find the aspects that fit your condition. For:
More and more people are living alone for at least part of their adult life. If you’re on your own, a pooch can provide companionship and more. A 2017 study of lifestyle and health details for 34,202 people suggests that having a dog can help reduce the risk of heart disease and prolong life expectancy for individuals in single-person households.
A 2012 review article in Frontiers in Psychology examines the impact of the human-animal bond on different physiological variables. The summary explained that several studies demonstrated how interaction with a friendly animal such as a dog effectively reduced fear and anxiety.
Help Us Relax
You may not need anyone to tell you that a game of fetch or just running your fingers through Fido’s hair can help you relax. Here’s why: Studies show that these interactions cause increased levels of dopamine and serotonin in the blood. Both substances help us relax and stay calm.
tudies on how animals help reduce stress abound. One case showed that people found a difficult task less stressful when accompanied by their furbaby than when they were with a close friend or spouse. Another reportdemonstrated that heart attack patients in high-stress jobs were more likely to survive more than a year after the event if they had a pet.
Dogs Make Us Happy
A 2009 study in Japan revealed that looking into Fido’s eyes triggers a release of oxytocin, which is sometimes called the “cuddle” or “love hormone”. This substance enhances our sense of bonding and well-being. In another investigation involving seniors, people over 60 that live alone were 4 times less likely to become depressed if they had a pet than if they didn’t live with a furry friend.
They Make Us Laugh
Help With Weight Loss
Studies show that regular walks with your four-legged friend can help you lose weight. In one research project, public housing residents who walked loaner dogs for 20 minutes a day, five days a week lost an average of 14.4 pounds in a 50-week study period. In addition, the Wellness Institute at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago conducted a year-long survey that showed pairing obese patients with overweight dogs for a walking program helped both parties drop pounds.
Reduce Trips To The Doctor
Particularly for seniors, owning a pet may help reduce the number of visits to the doctor. A one-year study of 938 medicare enrollees suggests that dog owners are less likely to see their physician after a stressful life event than individuals without a pet.
Motivate Us To Exercise More
Dogs need to walk, and that gets us moving. There are several studies showing that people with dogs tend to get more exercise than those without a canine companion. A Michigan State University investigation found that people who own a furbaby were 34% more likely to walk 150 minutes a week than non-dog owners. Other projects report that humans tend to walk faster and get better quality exercise when they go with a pup.
Lower Cholesterol And Triglyceride Levels
In addition to helping to relax us and lower our blood pressure, dogs may positively impact our cholesterol and triglyceride levels. One large study showed some correlation between dog ownership and lower levels of these blood lipids, but the findings weren’t conclusive.
A nationwide cohort study in Sweden revealed that dog owners, particularly if they live alone, were less likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease or premature death than those without a furry friend.
Add Structure And Routine
Dogs are creatures of habit. They thrive on a schedule for feeding and exercise. Being responsible for a pet can give people a sense of achievement that helps them stay balanced. And routines in our lives also benefit our health.
Enhance Our Joy
Kristen Fuller, M.D. and clinical mental health writer says: “Dogs are one of people’s most popular companions.”
They offer us unconditional love and a warm greeting when we come home. Caring for a pet helps us to feel needed and overcome our loneliness. What’s more, most people talk to their furry friends and may use them as sounding boards to work through problems.
They Fulfill Our Need For Touch
Psychologists understand the importance and value of physical touch. It can help to reduce stress and anxiety, decrease feelings of depression, relieve pain, and recover from health problems. Petting a dog can also lower our blood pressure and help us relax.
Surviving A Major Illness
We’ve seen how dogs can help heart attack patients live longer. This human-animal interaction also benefits people who have had a stroke or other circulatory illnesses. Single-person households with a canine companion demonstrated a reduced risk of death after a heart attack (33% less) or stroke (27% less).
They Boost The Immune System
Scientists have found that having a dog in the house can impact the types of bacteria found in the home. With this in mind, researchers at the University of Arizona proposed a study in 2015 to determine whether the microbes our pups share with us benefit our immune system. The results are not yet available.
Helps Reduce Fears And Phobia
Whether you’re responding to a potentially dangerous situation, or you’re suffering from a debilitating, intense fear of an imagined threat, dogs can help you cope. Many pups can sense when people feel stress, and when they do, they’ll do something to make you feel safe and calm.
Improved Mental Health
Evaluating 17 studies on the impact of the human-animal bond, a team of researchers from the Universities of Liverpool, Manchester, and Southampton concluded that pets can have a positive effect on patients with mental health disorders. Pets help people manage their conditions, overcome loneliness, and find a sense of purpose, among other benefits.
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