All about the fitness and health lifestyle
All about the fitness and health lifestyle

The Health Benefits of Having a Dog

Last Updated:
December 16, 2021
Author:
Mike

The Health Benefits of Having a Dog

Dogs can offer unconditional love, companionship, and entertainment for you and your family. However, there are also numerous health benefits of having a dog as well. Below are some of the benefits for not only your physical health but also your emotional health.

1. Lessen Stress and Loneliness

Your dog can help you avoid the feeling of stress, social isolation, and loneliness. They offer you unconditional love, cuddles, and emotional support. In fact, many studies show that simply spending 10 minutes a day with your dog can reduce stress and improve your mental state. Just petting a dog can help to immediately lower your heart rate and can help release tension in the muscles. Studies also show that having a dog can help you live longer. The studies show that dog owners frequently have lower blood pressure levels and an improved response to stress. Thus, helping your cardiovascular health.

2. Help with Trauma

Dogs, especially specially trained dogs can help with psychological trauma like PTSD and anxiety. A dog can be trained to recognize any triggers you may have and alert you to them. Thus, limiting the amount of anxiety and panic attacks you face. They also offer additional feelings of security, which helps to increase confidence again after an anxiety or panic attack.

3. Increase Your Exercise

All dogs require frequent exercise, however, some dogs require more exercise than others. Walking your dog daily is a great way for them and you to get exercise. This can help to keep their weight stable while building your fitness and getting active. In fact, dog owners are nearly four times more likely to meet minimum daily exercise recommendations than those without a dog. However, you must ensure that you can handle the amount of exercise your dog needs. Some breeds like a poodle only require an hour of moderate exercise per day for optimum health, this could include walks and playtime. Whereas, a border collie or golden retriever would require a minimum of 90 minutes of high-quality exercise through walking and playing. Thus, you should consider the breed of the dog and your family’s capabilities before getting one.

4. Increase Social Interaction

Dogs can be a great conversation starter, whether they are with you or not. When you walk your dog in a populated area you are bound to have a few people comment or say hello. Use these moments to build your social skills and help your dog be friendlier to strangers. Additionally, you can easily make friends with other dog owners by frequenting your local dog park. Additionally, dogs can be great companions for the elderly. Not only can they help reduce stress, but they also help with the cognitive function of those with dementia.

5. Improve Happiness

Let’s face it, puppies are absolutely adorable, and we can’t help but smile at them. In fact, dogs’ facial features can possess an infant schema effect. This commonly releases a caregiver response in humans, making us want to interact with them. Dogs are also natural mood boosters with their boundless energy and unconditional love.

As you can see, there are many different health benefits of having a dog. The love and emotional support a dog can offer is crucial for many during tough times. Even though we may think we are taking care of our canine companions, science shows that they also take care of us. For those looking for a dog, but unable to have a pet, consider having a pet in the metaverse.

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