Benefits of Owning a Pet
Pet owners know how much their furry friend improves their quality of life. But it’s not all about the unconditional love the give…although that actually provides a wellness boost..there are an array of proven health benefits including physical, mental and emotional perks. From enhancing social skills, decreasing depression, stress and anxiety, lowering blood pressure, improving immunity and can even decrease your risk of heart attack and stroke.
Children who grow up in a household with pets benefit in a myriad of ways.. especially in their emotional development. They learn to express themselves and learn to relate in more positive ways. Pets are also hugely beneficial to children suffering from Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). For children with ADHD, taking care of a pet can encourage them to focus on responsibilities through a predictable routine. While the sensory experience of holding and petting an animal can be soothing for children with Autism.
Pets can dramatically improve immunity and prevent allergies. Research has shown the more pets you have earlier in life, the fewer allergies you will develop. Having a pet in the home can actually lower a child’s likelihood of developing related allergies by as much as 33 %.
Studies have found a strong connection that having a pet has the potential to lower blood pressure along with cholesterol and triglyceride levels. These benefits are thought to be connected with a pets’ ability to help reduce or at least control their owners’ overall stress levels. Dog owner’s also tend to be more physically active…enjoying daily walks, throwing a ball and being outside.
Pets are a great way to beat the blues. Not only are they known to provide us with unconditional love, but they may also give us a sense of purpose, which can be crucial for those feeling down in the dumps. Pets also combat feelings of loneliness by providing companionship, which can boost your overall mood and even bring you feelings of joy and happiness. Many hospitals and nursing homes use Animal-assisted Therapy (AAT) or Pet-facilitated Therapy (PFT) programs on a regular basis with the sick & elderly. Walter Reed Army Medical Center is using dogs to help Vets with PTSD. Veterans who have a pet have someone they’re responsible for, someone who unconditionally cares about them. They don’t have to explain what they’ve been through or answer any questions. There is a decreased suicide rate, one of the biggest health threats Veterans face when re entering society.
Owning a pet also provides great opportunities to socialize and meet people. We sometimes have a hard time getting to know each other, pets can be the common denominator that helps open the door and connect via a mutual interest..your pet!
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