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As many pet owners can attest, having a furry friend dramatically improves their lives. From veterans having a service dog by their side to stories of pets providing help for many children and others across the world, animals have helped us in a variety of ways. That being said, having pets around the home can help our health in more ways than you would think. Below are some other things you might not have realized.
One major benefit is a decrease in stress. Research shows that when people are performing a stressful task, the impact was lessened when they were with their pets. This stress reduction was larger than having family, romantic partner or even a close friend nearby. Certain addiction centers have even caught onto this phenomenon by encouraging their patients to get a pet and even allowing pets in their facilities.
Because of the loss of stress, it makes sense that people also have lower blood pressure as well. Our stress levels are connected to our blood pressure so it stands to reason being around a furry friend who’ll always love you and be happy is going to affect your mood. In many cases having a pet is mandatory for people who are hypertensive or are generally high-risk patients as they can help in soothing those types of patients with ease.
One benefit even the most avid pet fan might not realize is that a pet helps in easing pain. In particular, pets can help soothe pain like migraines or arthritis. The main reason they can do that is that pets sooth our anxieties which are connected to pain. Furthermore, hospitals have tried adding pets into their care for patients who went through surgery as opposed to prescribing pain medication. The results have been very effective with patients needing significantly less pain medication after they leave the hospital.
Pet owners also gain the perks of having lower cholesterol as well. While research does show people, particularly men, having less cholesterol, it’s hard to say whether the pet’s presence is the cause or if it’s the fact that people lead healthier lifestyles if they have one. Regardless, having a pet can help in various fashions, particularly if the pet requires daily exercise like a dog.
The last benefit we uncovered is that pet owners are generally in better moods than those who don’t have a pet. All of that stress and anxiety is washed away and is replaced by happier spirits. The big reason is that when you come back home, you are treated like a star. You’ll always have someone to come back home to that misses you dearly. Because of this, people who own pets generally laugh more and are in happier moods. It is also for this reason why a lot of therapy these days include animals as part of the recovery process.
In the end, having a pet can help you in so many cases than you might realize. Having a pet you can hold can provide a variety of benefits like the ones we mentioned and so much more. There is a reason why pets have been involved so much in our therapy sessions these days.