While taking care and raising a dog is not easy, what you get in return is so much more than what you expect. Not only does your pet bring a smile on your face every time you come home, but he affects your overall health and well-being. Because of a canine’s natural loyalty and loving personality, it’s no surprise why dogs can often be seen at hospitals and homes for the elderly – they are there to cheer up patients.
Here are 5 ways your dog is making you healthier:
Helps fight stress
Dogs are proven to enhance one’s mood. Playing with a dog is said to increase serotonin (the good mood hormone) and lower the amount of cortisol (bad mood hormone) in the body. As a result, anxiety is reduced and stress is alleviated.
Keeps you active
Canines are naturally active and playful creatures. They have a lot of energy that needs to be released that’s why a daily walk is highly encouraged. Dog owners, in general, are more likely to go out to walk and exercise compared to non-dog owners because of the need to accompany their pets for walks, to go the park or simply play a game of fetch.
Helps combat depression
It has been proven that having a dog as a pet is an effective way to fight depression. Taking care or simply petting your dog triggers the body to release dopamine and serotonin, two hormones that have been proven to reduce depression. Canines are also excellent for therapy – counselors, hospitals, homes and numerous organizations use a dog’s service for patients and people with disabilities.
Strengthens the immune system
According to medical studies, individuals who have been raised around canines have higher levels of some key immune hormones which gives them a stronger immune system. Research also shows that these individuals are less likely to have allergies.
Contributes to overall health and well-being
Numerous studies show that people with pet dogs have overall better health. They’re good for heart health – those with fur babies have higher recovery rates from heart attacks. Interaction with canines also helps lower cholesterol, triglyceride levels and blood pressure.
You see, our furry friends are not only there to make us smile, they also make us a lot healthier! So the next time you have some free time, be sur to spend quality time with your dog. Don’t forget his treats!