To Get a Pet
I have read a lot recently about how having a pet can really help you to relax and de-stress. In fact, many hospitals and care homes now have people who take animals to visit the patients to help them to feel less anxious.
I’m quite interested in the idea of getting a cat or a small dog to keep me company during the evenings, however, I’m not sure yet whether I’m ready to take the plunge.
Some of the books that I’ve read have pointed out the many advantages of getting a pet including the companionship and bond that you can feel with a furry friend, not to mention the additional exercise from playtime and walks. Yet there are other reasons why getting a pet can help your well-being.
Pets are known to lower cholesterol levels, especially in the case of dogs since going on daily walks keeps them in check. Pets are also famous for relieving stress, in fact just being in a room with an animal can have a surprisingly calming effect as oxytocin, a power chemical in the brain is released when looking at pets, and cortisol, the stress hormone, is decreased. There have even been documented cases of people with PTSD who were unable to leave the house until they got a dog and then their life as returned back to normal. Since I’m always on the lookout for new relaxation techniques, I’m very interested in this aspect of pet ownership.
Pets are also known to possibly reduce blood pressure and to boost fitness levels. Dog walkers are much more fit than other people who go for regular walks and can walk up to 300 minutes every week. Dog owners have a 54% greater chance of meeting weekly recommended physical activity levels. People who have pets also have a reduced chance of developing cardiovascular disease while those who already have it have a much better recovery rate.
For those who have children, pets can prevent the occurrence of allergies and asthma and for those who suffer from depression, pets are the ideal social support, helping to improve well-being by boosting self-esteem and feelings of competence and autonomy. As pet can give unconditional acceptance and love that so many people crave in the modern world.
Even sufferers of chronic pain find that their lives are easier when they stroke their pet since endorphins are released which relieve pain, and when it comes to relationships, it has been proven that pet owners have more connection in their personal relationships and also have stronger bonds to their community. Younger people who have pets in the home are more likely to be empathetic and confident, taking on roles that involve leadership.
As another added advantage, pets can monitor changes in health, and this has been proven in cases of diabetes where dogs are able to detect that their owner’s sugar level is low even before they can. Since pets have no agenda and won’t ever judge, they boost their owner’s self-esteem and bring families closer together. The more I think about it, the more I think it’s time to start looking for my furry companion!