The well-known saying “Dog is man’s best friend” is doubly true when you know all the health benefits that having a dog as a pet can bring. Canine pet owners may well know that a dog is capable of being a great companion in a number of situations.
In addition, dogs tend to be very loyal to their masters and affectionate and loving. It is for this and many other reasons that dogs and humans have had a great alliance for many years.
Benefits of having a dog as a pet
Having a dog as a pet can generate numerous benefits to both the physical and emotional health of its owners. In this article we detail what they are.
- Increased physical activity. Dogs require daily physical activity to be healthy. As it is generally the owners who are in charge of this, owning a dog can increase the physical activity of its owners. At the same time, this will reduce the risks of obesity and cardiovascular disease in both the pet and the person.
- Reduced stress. It has been shown that canine pet owners suffer less stress than people without dogs. In fact, contact with a dog through petting and even conversation is able to reduce cortisol levels, the hormone responsible for stress. This same contact can also increase the levels of oxytocin, the love hormone.
- Better mental health. A dog can help fight depression and loneliness. That is why they are able to have a positive impact on people’s mental health. On the other hand, a person with a dog may have lower levels of anxiety, as well as better self-esteem.
- Increased socialization. Dogs can sometimes be tools to improve the socialization skills of their owners. A person with a dog can take it for a walk and turn the moment into an opportunity to meet other people. In other words, an opportunity to make new friends and new social connections.
- Increased responsibility. Owning a dog can also help people foster a sense of responsibility. That is, it can be beneficial for people to know that they have another being in their care to look after.
- Senior citizens. Dogs can be a great companion for the elderly. They can help reduce isolation and loneliness, which older adults sometimes experience. They can also help them to be physically active
- Blood pressure reducers. Dog pet owners have lower blood pressure levels than people without pets. It is possible that this is related to the exercise and lower stress levels of people with dogs.
- More immunity. Children who grow up with dogs tend to have higher levels of immunity than others who grow up without dogs. In fact, children who grow up with dogs are less likely to develop asthma and allergies.
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