The Power of Pets

The common expression is widely known – a dog is man’s best friend, although around the world a variety of animals are celebrated as man’s best friend. In the United States almost every household has at least one common household pet. Many people consider the pets they own a part of their family. Pets provide many benefits to humans such as comfort and companionship. On a health note, they also can decrease your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, as well as feelings of loneliness. Pet owners suffer fewer minor health problems, such as painful joints, hay fever, insomnia, and anxiety.

Pets also increase the opportunities for exercise and outdoor activities and allow people to socialize with others who own pets as well. There have been numerous studies that show that having a pet reduces the stress levels of their owners and increases enjoyment in your overall life style. Various studies below are given in
• Having a pet present reduces a pet owner’s stress more than the company of a close friend or even a spouse. Researchers asked 240 married couples, half of them pet owners, to perform two stress-inducing tasks—mental arithmetic problems and submerging a hand in ice water for two minutes. People with a pet present enjoyed much lower baseline heart rate and blood pressure levels than people without pets. They also made fewer errors during the math test.
• Pets help people survive heart attacks. One study shows that heart attack sufferers who own a dog have an eight times better chance of surviving one year after suffering a heart attack.
• Pets provide therapeutic touch. Tests show that within minutes of petting a dog, the human and dog experience a massive release of such beneficial hormones as prolactin, oxytocin, and phenylethylamine.
• Pets help combat allergies in children. One study found that living with two or more cats and dogs as toddlers made children less susceptible to other allergy-inducing substances by the time they turned seven.
• Couples who own pets have closer relationships, are more satisfied in marriage, respond better to stress than couples without pets, and have more frequent contact with each other and with others.

Not only do pets allow you to perform better math, they also offer family enjoyment, as 70% of families surveyed reported an increase in family happiness and fun after adopting a pet.

I have a small Maltese mixed with a poodle, Chanel, a four years old. In my own personal experience my dog always brings a smile to my face. She is very playful and energetic, and loves to go on afternoon runs at our favorite trail. I truly believe that pets do increase the amount of enjoyment and happiness in our lives, and I hope your pets bring that same happiness into your life.