Whether you’re taking your dog on a long hike or just gazing at your fish swimming through their aquarium, you’re reaping an array of health benefits from your pet. Here’s how!
Improved Mental Health.
Pets remind us that we’re not alone, and most provide an opportunity for touch, which both releases oxytocin (the “love” hormone) and reduces cortisol (our main stress hormone).
Playing with your dog in the park, shopping for bird seed, chatting online with other cat owners…pets provide us many ways to interact with people who share our interests.
Retirement and having an empty nest can reduce older adults’ sense of purpose, but caring for a pet stimulates optimism, self-worth, and even laughter.
Structure and Routine.
Keeping to a predictable schedule can help you maintain healthy habits and manage stress. Since pets expect their meals, grooming, and walks on a regular schedule, they will help you stay on track.
Reduced Work Stress.
Offices may not offer this perk yet, but if you work all or part-time at home, your most helpful coworker may be the non-human one!
*2021 Benchmark Survey of U.S. Pet Owners, Human Animal Bond Research Institute