There’s a reason dogs are known as man’s best friend. Dogs, cats, and some other pets make wonderful companions and provide their human owners with many health benefits, both physical and emotional. Dogs, in particular, have a wonderful ability to form bonds with people. In fact, dogs have developed unique chemistry with humans that can be traced back to many tens of thousands of years. The following describes the many benefits of owning a pet.
Love and Companionship
Dogs and cats provide us with unconditional love. They don’t judge us the way other humans do. It doesn’t matter what you say or do, your dog or cat will accept you just as you are. Love is not just a one-way street. Your pet loves you and also provides you with someone to love. This is especially important if you live alone. Living with a pet can help manage loneliness and depression. You feel happy and wanted when you wake up or come home, and your dog greets you wagging his tail, or your cat wants you to stroke him. Taking care of a pet also provides you with a sense of purpose.
Emotional attachment to another living being produces brain effects that reduce your response to stress. For instance, the level of oxytocin, a “feel good” chemical, is raised when you stroke your dog or cat. There was a fascinating study reported in the journal Science that found that oxytocin gets a boost in both the human and the dog when a person stares lovingly into the eyes of his dog. Interacting with a pet has also been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
The physical health benefits of owning a pet arise out of the activity necessary to take care of it. You have to spend time playing with your pet, cleaning out the litter box, and, of course, taking your dog for walks every day. And let’s not forget the social benefits of dog walking when you meet others also walking their dogs.
Teaching Children Responsibility
All children love animals and providing them with a pet that they have to take care of teaches them to be responsible for another living being. However, although all children when begging for a hamster or a guinea pig insist that, of course, they will take care of it, you, as the parent should acknowledge that there will be times when your child falls down on the job, and you will have to step in.
Keep Your Pet Healthy
Whether you have a dog, cat, parrot, rabbit, or other kind of pet, provide them with the best care appropriate to their species. It’s also important to provide regular veterinary care to keep your pet healthy. Don’t neglect any necessary vaccinations, deworming, flea and tick control, etc. Contact your veterinarian if you think your pet may be sick or you have any questions about your pet’s health. And, if you reside in the Columbia, SC area and your pet is involved in an emergency situation, don’t hesitate to bring them to CVETS. Your pet provides you with so many health benefits; they deserve the best care in return.