A dog may be more than just a best friend – research is showing the value of a pet as a means for treatment.
According to aarp.com, 62% of Americans own a pet, and they do so for the companionship, love, and affection that these animals afford them. While these benefits are great, numerous studies are suggesting actual health benefits associated with owning a furry friend.
Here are a few ways in which pets can help your health (aarp.com):
• Pets help recovery from heart attacks – A National Institutes of Health study found that dog owners had a higher survival rate after a heart attack, compared to those who did not own dogs.
• Pets help reduce stress…more so than humans.
• Pet owners have less obesity – Pet owners are more active, simply because they want their pets to stay active and healthy as well (i.e. more walks).
• Pet owners have better mobility as they age – Another National Institutes of Health study found that adults aged 71-82 who regularly walked their dogs were more mobile, compared to those who did not own pets.
• Pets can help with cholesterol – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that owning a pet can decrease cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure.
There are so many different pet options out there for everyone. If you are not a cat or dog person, try getting a fish or other small animal. It will be great for your health and happiness!