How Having a Dog Can Benefit Your Health
Americans love their dogs. In 2017, there were nearly 90 million dogs living in American households, meaning that nearly half of all households had one.
Why do we let these furry four-legged friends into our lives? For most people, it’s companionship as well as an excellent burglar alarm.
But there are other advantages to having a dog, including many health benefits to you and your family, like:
More exercise – When you own a dog, you should be taking it out for walks every day. And the benefit is that when you’re exercising your pooch, you too are exercising. Walking 30 minutes a day can do wonders for your health.
Less stress – Numerous studies have shown that people with dogs have lower stress levels. Engaging with your dog in whatever form can reduce your stress.
Illness detection – Dogs really see the world through their noses thanks to their keen sense of smell. Some dogs are sensitive enough to detect the onset of epileptic seizures, or the presence of some cancers. Many dog owners have reported their dog sniffing, licking or nudging areas of the body that later turned out to be cancerous.
More allergy tolerance – Children who are raised around pets have a reduced chance of having allergies. And growing up with a dog can boost immunity to pet allergies later in life.
Boosting brain development – Dogs boost brain development in children, along with emotional growth and connection to others.
Stronger heart – Studies have shown that petting a dog can lower your heart rate, and male pet owners tend to have reduced rates of heart disease.
Less chance of depression – Dog owners are less likely to be depressed. The companionship they offer has been shown to help people who have been diagnosed with clinical depression, largely because caring for another living thing can help relieve symptoms of depression and make people feel more positive.
Safety – Dogs are like a living alarm system. Barking dogs can keep burglars at bay and they can alert you if someone is snooping around the outside of your house, giving you a greater sense of security.