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One of the great things about pets is that they love their owners unconditionally. And while a lot of us take that for granted, this simple sign of affection is something that our pets teach us. But as more studies come out, there are actually many other things pets teach us indirectly that we don’t even realize. That or need a reminder.
Having a pet gives teaches us an important lesson in physical connection: it’s needed. There’s nothing quite as soothing as scratching a cat’s head until they fall asleep. It’s this kind of physical contact that can actually have a massive positive effect on our own mental state. Through a joint study conducted by two charitable organizations — Cats Protection and the Mental Health Foundation — the organizations found that caring for a cat affected the owner’s own depression. A third of the participant’s in the study claimed that petting their cat was both a calming and helpful activity. On top of that, 87 percent of them said that their cat was a positive impact on their mental health.
Additionally, dog owners have also reported that walking their furry friends helps them stay fit. In one study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health researchers found that dog owners were found to be less likely to walk for transportation compared to cat owners or those with no pets. However, dog owners were more likely to walk for leisurely reasons. In other words, dogs teach us the importance of regular physical activity.
Another thing you might not realize is that a pet can be a great way for coping with stress. Think about it. Since when does your cat or dog ever get stressed out about something? Unless you’re out for several days or the whole day, they’re normally a huge bundle of joy when you’re around. On top of that, pets can also help you relieve stress throughout the day. In a study that was published in Psychosomatic Medicine, pet owners and non-pet owners were asked to finish a series of math questions in a certain time limit. The study found that those who had pets to come home to were less likely to have rising heart rates or high blood pressure levels. They even performed better if their pet was in the room compared to those who didn’t have pets at all.
Pets can even go as far as teaching you how to be a great leader. It might sound far fetched, but according to a survey online of 857 Americans, the study found that owning a pet can be a contributing factor to professional success. The results of the survey found that 86 percent of pet owners found that management and multitasking skills were easier because of their furry friends.
To many professionals, having a pet in your life at an early age can do a lot of good to you and it certainly makes sense based on this science. And in the end, these benefits are merely an added bonus when we think about it. To have a companion by your side that loves you unconditionally can be one of the best gifts ever.