Having a pet changes many aspects of your life. I purposely did not write “own” a pet, because most pet owners can tell you that most likely you are owned by them, rather than the other way around, especially if you have a cat in the family.
But did you know that pets can also affect your overall health?
Here are a list of 4 ways a pet has a positive affect on your health:
1.According to Dr. Silke Wechsung of the University of Bonn, Germany, simply being close to a dog can have a lowering effect on your pulse rate, which is a sign of relaxation. Instantly, the overall well being begins to improve, no matter what happened before the contact with the animal.
2.She also suggests that active engagement with your pet, via play, stops negative self-talk, by interrupting and redirecting it. This is especially helpful for someone who suffers from depression, and has a hard time disconnecting from negative train of thought without an outside influence, preventing spirals into even deeper depression.
3. It brings needed structure into a daily routine. Especially older people, people who live by themselves and suffer from that loneliness, or have depression, creating a positive structure can have a very positive affect on their overall health. A pet, no matter which type, forces the individual to create and follow a routine, no matter what.
4. Dog walks, having to take your pet outside no matter what the weather is like, also strengthens the immune system, according to Dr. Wechsung. Regular outdoor exercise with your dog, becomes a preventive health measure.
If you are considering to add a pet to your family, please always consider getting a pet from a shelter. There are hundreds of animals waiting for a home, and to give back to you, by being your companion and healthy support.
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