According to many different sources, sixty percent of Americans have a pet. Most of these animals are dogs or cats, the more of the two being dogs. Yes, dogs are considered to be “man’s best friend” and there is a reason for that. Animals help people in all different kinds of ways. Sometimes these are ways that the humans do not even realize. One of the most important ways is the unconditional love that they provide.
Companion animals or Emotional Support Animals are trained to help people every day and they are also used for what is called “animal assisted therapy.” Pets have a tremendous healing value and this is seen every day in different ways and in different places from home to assisted living facilities.
How do dogs help people’s health? Here are three ways that companion animals can assist in improving health, according to a blog entry from Psych Central written by Richard Taite:
- Physical Health – Petting an animal such as a dog or cat can immediately lower blood pressure and longer-term, improve cardiovascular health. Studies suggest that physical pain is lessened among those who interact with a dog or cat. Sitting with and petting an animal creates a relaxation response in our bodies and the release of endorphins in the brain can calm us.
- Mental Health – One of the reasons that pet therapies are so popular is their effect on human mental health. Interacting with an animal helps lessen loneliness and eases depression symptoms. Anxiety levels are reduced along with feelings of alienation or isolation.
- Spiritual Health – Connection is what life’s about. People simply feel more connected and happier when they’re with animals. This is probably because we are animals ourselves and to be with others that love us completely, just as we are, is part of the connection that all people crave.
If you do not have an animal and feel that you have the time and desire to care for one, please rescue. There are a plethora of shelters all over that are just waiting to find great homes for their animals. Find love the simple way and rescue a dog or cat! You will not be sorry.