Anyone who has ever owned a pet can say with confidence that pets have an incredible ability to both calm a person, as well as bring a boost of happiness and energy. These remarkable abilities that pets can have aren’t just imagined; in fact, scientific studies have now been able to show that pet owners enjoy greater physical and mental health as a direct result of having one or more pets to come home to every day after work.
As if you needed more convincing that your pet is super special to you, be sure to keep on reading to find out about some of the amazing health benefits that being a pet owner can provide, as I learned from a post by Health. You may want to cuddle up to your cat or dog while reading this!
To start, pets can provide great motivation for their owners to get physical exercise, especially if that pet is a dog. Those walks that you take your beloved dog on every day are a great way to fit in some exercise, especially if you don’t have the time to hit the gym. Daily walks can lower your cholesterol, help you lose weight, improve cardiovascular health, and provide you with a healthy amount of vitamin D thanks to exposure to the sunlight. It helps that when you’re with your dog, you will probably be more willing to go a farther distance than if you were walking alone.
Pets are also incredible stress relievers, believe it or not. Studies have found that the simple act of petting or stroking your cat or dog is soothing not only for the animal, but for the owner as well. In the same way that hugging a human can release oxytocin, the so-called “feel good” chemical, petting an animal can do the same thing. It is also known to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol in the body.
Finally, pets of all sizes are able to relieve symptoms of depression and provide social support that may be temporarily lacking in the owner’s outside life. When you take into account the fact that pets help improve their owner’s fitness routines while also lowering levels of stress and depression, it really shouldn’t come as a surprise that pets are so beneficial to a person’s overall health and wellness. I know I’m going to give my two dogs a giant hug the next time I see them!
This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.