Other than being awesome friends, there are other perks to owning and caring for a dog: Your health can actually improve. It’s the truth! Dogs are wonderful companions and friends, but their presence has a soothing effect on humans that can help the body to better function. How does that work, you might ask? Here are five ways.
1. You Stay Healthier for Longer with a Dog
The good vibes that you are picking up from Fido aren’t in your imagination. A study done in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology reported that senior citizens who owned pets visited the doctor’s office less over a one-year period than those who did not own pets. Give a high-paw to your canine friend thank them, but return the favor: Buy dog vitamins online. They will never stop thanking you!
2. They’re Good for the Heart
In the metaphorical sense, dogs are good for the heart in that you get endless love from them. According to Harvard Health, however, they are actually good for your heart. The study shows some evidence that dog owners have lower triglyceride levels as well as lower cholesterol than non-dog owners. Another perk included is lower blood pressure. The odd part about this study is that there were no medical or environmental differences that factored into this phenomenon beyond owning a dog, so the saying is true all around: Dogs are good for the heart.
3. Stress Levels are Reduced
Do you know that tickly sensation you get when you are petting a dog? That’s your body responding to the powers of the good boy or girl. Studies have been done on the human body’s response to petting a dog during a stressful situation, and science proves that dogs will calm people down during these moments. In fact, service dogs are helping more than their disabled companions these days and have moved onto other important jobs.
- Acting as support dogs to mentally frail victims, specially trained court dogs will sit at a victim’s feet as they testify before a judge. The victims are able to pet the dog as they do something that is frightening and stressful.
- Dogs have found jobs in hospitals, providing comfort to sick or depressed patients.
- Elderly patients who care for a dog in nursing or assisted living homes have also seen improvement in their mental health.
4. Your Activity Levels Grow
Between demanding a walk every couple hours and constantly shoving a slobbery tennis ball in your hand, dogs don’t let their humans sit still for very long! Using your dog’s energy level as a guide can help increase your fitness level. Make it a daily goal to wear yourself and the dog out. Go for a hike or a jog, or go to the lake and go for a swim together. If your dog is tired at the end of it, you’ve done well. If you and your dog are both tired, you’ve earned a gold star.
5. Conversation Starter
A dog’s silly grin and goofy greeting dance are hard to ignore. Some people don’t have an easy time striking up a conversation, but having a dog with you acts as a social ice-breaker thanks to their unique personalities. Dogs are great for dissolving awkwardness and tension during conversations, so they are nice for helping you to make friends and meet new people.
You always knew how amazing dogs are, but the more that science learns about them, the more loveable they are. Thank the dogs in your life for being the best, most loyal companions on the planet, and for helping you to live longer and enjoy your life too.