Here at Hesca.org, we look at how pets can have a positive effect on your overall health. So look at some of the ways your furry friend can benefit you.
Heart Health: Studies indicate that pets can help reduce stress and anxiety and lower blood pressure, which ultimately means a better heart health for humans. According to a recent survey, pet owners on average were found to have lower cholesterol levels than those who did not own pets. This is because research has shown that owning a pet tends to increase physical activity as well as social interaction. So if you’re looking for an excuse to get up off the couch and take Fido outside, this could be it!
Pet ownership also decreases risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease such as obesity and high blood pressure – both of which are particularly common in dogs (O’Neil et al., 2004; Sargan et al., 2003).
However, the benefits don’t stop there. With an improved heart health comes a lowered stress level and better sleep. And did we mention that both of these things are extremely important to maintaining good health?
Social Connections: You might not think of your pet as providing social interaction but it’s true! People with pets tend to have more friends, go out more often, take longer vacations, spend more time participating in sports or exercise activities and are less likely to be homebound than people without pets (Poresky & Hendrix, 2001; Wells & Anderson 1999). So if you’re looking for some company during walk time or when playing fetch in the backyard, Rover is ready.