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Health Benefits of Owning a Dog

June 22, 2021

Dogs provide us with unconditional love, companionship, comfort, and a whole lot of wet licking too. Your dog’s exciting welcome at the end of a long day does a great deal of cheering you up, and having a pup who relies on you gives you a sense of parenthood. 

In addition to these, did you know that owning a dog also does wonders for your health? Studies have shown that owning a dog improves your physical and mental health significantly. Here are some of the most common health benefits of owning a dog:

  1. They are Great for Your Heart

Perhaps the most essential benefit on this list, dog owners typically have lower blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol levels relative to non-dog owners. This is a clear indication that owning a dog helps to significantly lower the risk of heart diseases and ensure general heart health. For senior citizens, they help maintain joint health since you would have to do a bit of extra moving around if you have a pup. 

  1. They Get You Exercising

Most dogs generally have high energy levels, and they wouldn’t reduce their activity for you to keep up. Rather, when you’re out on walks, you would find yourself striving to keep up with their pace. This helps you to get some exercise in and truthfully, it is a lot more fun than taking a walk or jogging in the park alone. Similarly, older adults who walk their dogs regularly are more mobile and tend to have a lower body mass index compared to non-dog walkers. 

  1. They Keep Depression at Bay

Playing with a pup helps improve general mood and reduce tension as well. This is a result of a release of serotonin and dopamine within the body system which are neurotransmitters that make you feel good. You would get a feeling of calmness and peace. Therefore owning a dog keeps depression away and it is a great idea for people who suffer from mild to moderate depression.   

  1. They Help You Get In Shape

In addition to hitting the gym and getting a lot of cardio in, another way to drop a few pounds is by owning a pup. Since walking them involves physical activity on your part, you burn calories while doing this. Similarly, they might force you into a sudden sprint sometimes, all of this physical activity ensures that you start dropping pounds in no time. 

  1. They Give Purpose and Meaning

Not having someone to love or be responsible for takes a toll on mental health sometimes. This is particularly evident in the lives of retired folks. Owning a pup makes you have to do certain things, these come in the form of responsibilities that you would absolutely enjoy. If you’re feeling down, you would still have to walk your dog and the outdoors would most likely improve your mood. Being a pet parent staves off isolation and loneliness which helps keep cognitive decline at bay. A pet gives you a reason to get going in the morning because they are practically helpless without you and trust you 100%. 

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