There’s a reason dogs are referred to as (wo)man’s best friend. They are dependable, loving, devoted, loyal, and usually pretty cuddly. Who wouldn’t want a best friend with these amazing qualities?
While you may not realize, though, is that dogs are much more than a trusting buddy. There is evidence that has proven the physical benefits of living with a dog varies from things like lower blood pressure and increased physical activity, along with lower cholesterol levels and improved cardiovascular health.
In addition to the above benefits, there is new research that has shown several ways that dogs offer a sense of calm for a person’s psychological and emotional stresses, along with certain traumatic events. Keep reading to learn how dogs improve well-being here.
Life is full of stress, to-do lists, and endless responsibilities. Some studies have shown that there are psychological advantages of having a dog come to work and many companies (for example, Etsy, Amazon, Mars Inc., and others) have already adopted this practice.
Another stressed population is college students. The University of British Columbia brought in therapy dogs and allowed 246 students to cuddle and pet them during a drop-in session. The results of this were rather impressive – after engaging with the dogs, there was a significant reduction in overall stress levels and an increase in happiness after the session.
Dogs Lead People to Nature
As a dog owner, you are outside walking your dog every day. In fact, this usually happens several times a day. The fact is, just owning a dog is something that encourages people to get into green spaces – go to the beach, walk in the park, or even venture into the woods. Thanks to these “leash pullers,” it is possible to get more time in nature, which offers amazing benefits.
Nature offers an array of positive benefits, including increased social interaction, soothing pain, encouraging physical activity, mood-boosting benefits, and creativity. Studies have shown that being in any green space, regardless of if it is an endless coastline or small park, will boost your overall mental health.
Dogs Provide Empathy
Dogs have the ability to serve as an emotional contagion – which is when feelings spread between people and animals. It is something that is gaining traction in the realm of science. Dogs are able to sense and even differentiate between good and bad feelings. This is beneficial and can help those who need to remain calm or focus on something else if they begin to feel agitated, angry, or experience other negative emotions.
Is There a Special Pup in Your Life?
If you own a dog, you likely resonate with much of the information here. Dogs are “feel good” animals. In addition to enjoying your dog’s company and companionship, you can also show your loyalty and affection for them in return by ensuring they have the best of everything. You can even decorate your home with items that show how important your dog is (click here to learn more).