Pets are generally classed as a member of the family and in majority of cases are important to ones wellbeing.
Study has proved that dogs are linked to improving heart health in particular heart disease and overall a humans health.
The following points highlight the benefits of having a pet.
- Everyday movement
Owning a pet allows incidental physical activities. Majority of cases pets provide nudges which leads to movement and reduces prolonged sitting whether it having to feed or opening the door to let them outside.
- Having a sense of purpose
It has been shown that groups that are at risk of or are experiencing poor mental or physical health, pets can provide “a reason to get up in the morning”.
Pets are seen as reliant on their owners functionally (“need me to feed them or they will die”) and emotionally (“he would pine for me terribly”).
- Regular distressing activities
Interaction with pets can reduce stress. There is evidence petting an animal may reduce heart rates, and co-sleeping with pets may improve some people’s quality of sleep.
- Belonging and commitment
Pets can act as a social catalyst, promoting social connections, conversations, and even leading to the development of networks of practical support (a form of commitment). They provide a non-judgemental, simple relationship and in particular with older people reduce loneliness and social isolation.