The Health Benefits of Pets: Mental & Physical
Pets really do have some powerful health benefits for us as humans, which can affect us both mentally and physically. Caring for a cat, dog, or any other animal can help relieve depression and anxiety, lower stress levels and also improve heart health.
In this blog, we talk about how owning a pet can help with your mental well-being and assist you in living a happier and healthier life.
How can a pet benefit your life?
Pets, especially dogs and cats can reduce our stress, anxiety and depression, as well as help to reduce loneliness. Not only can pets help with our mental well-being, but they can also improve our physical health, encouraging us to be more active therefore improving our cardiovascular activity.
Owning a pet can also really help children, allowing them to feel more secure, safe and active in the long run. They can also provide long-lasting companionship for those older adults too, adding joy and unconditional love to your life.
When we talk about the health benefits of pets, we don’t always just mean cats and dogs, a rabbit is still an ideal pet and can provide you with many health and mood-boosting benefits, especially for the younger ones in your family.
Studies have shown that people who own pets are less likely to suffer from depression than those without. Playing with a dog or cat can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which keeps you calm and relaxed. Experts say that people with pets have lower blood pressure in a stressful situation than those that choose not to.
Pets have a therapeutic effect because they can fulfil basic human needs for touch, stroking or hugging an animal can calm and soothe you when feeling stressed or anxious. The companionship of a pet is just like no other.
How can a pet change your lifestyle?
You’re probably thinking, how can a little furry friend running around the house help change your lifestyle completely? Here are 5 different ways that pets can give your mental well-being a boost:
Pets require a lot of attention and care, their routine is just as important as yours is. Having a consistent routine when you feed and walk them can keep them balanced and calm, just like it will for you as well. No matter how you feel, whether you’re stressed, anxious or tired, you always know you have a routine to stick to. Fresh air does you good.
Dogs and cats often provide comfort and companionship when you find yourself in anxious situations. Pets are a great aid to ease you in anxious situations, they can help you to become more mindful and appreciate the little things in life.
If you aren’t a very sociable person, you’re definitely going to be with pets - dogs especially. Whether you’re walking your dog through the park, on a hike, or just visiting the local pet shop, you’ll no doubt start creating friendships and relationships with other like-minded people.
If you have a super cute puppy then you’ll get stopped every 5 minutes on a dog walk!
Pets are great for companionship, and can not only help with loneliness but can help to prevent illnesses and even add years onto your life. Caring for an animal can help you feel wanted and needed, as your purpose is to look after your companion, and if you live alone, this could really boost your mood too. There is nothing better than coming home after a bad day to your pet greeting you at the door.
Some animals require a lot of walking, especially larger breeds of dogs, but this could also be a great benefit to you. Increasing your exercise levels is not only beneficial for your mental well-being but also helps with physical health too. Walks, hikes and runs with your pet are all very rewarding ways to keep healthy - they’ll also love you for it too.
If you’re thinking about adding a furry friend to your family then you have our full support. At 365 Vet we stock a wide range of treatments for flea and tick treatments, eye and ear care and much more. Equally, there are other alternatives to pet ownership, like volunteering at a pet rescue or adopting a dog.