Do you want to improve your health? Get a pet.
Of course, your lifestyle has to be one that allows for the care of another. It does take time. It does infringe upon your personal regime.
But is this infringement worth it?
- Dog owners are less likely to suffer from depression than those without pets.
- People with dogs have lower blood pressure in stressful situations than those without pets. One study even found that when people with borderline hypertension adopted dogs from a shelter, their blood pressure declined significantly within five months.
- Playing with a dog or cat can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which calm and relax.
- Pet owners have lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels (indicators of heart disease) than those without pets.
- Heart attack patients with dogs survive longer than those without.
- Pet owners over age 65 make 30 percent fewer visits to their doctors than those without pets.
Caring for a pet can increase your levels of exercise, provide companionship, allow you meet new people, and add much needed structure to your life- especially if your Mondays and Thursdays all look alike!
Written for Reminiscing the Arts: April 11th.