The benefits of owning a pet

We all know that dogs can help humans in lots of ways – they lead the blind, they assist the disabled, they work alongside police and military personnel, they bring joy to patients in hospitals and nursing homes and their powerful noses can even be used to sniff out everything ranging from drugs to cancer!

But your pet doesn’t need specialized training in order to help you live a happier, healthier life! Studies show that pet owners enjoy lots of benefits, both mental and physical. Consider some of these interesting factoids!

1. Pet owners have lower blood pressure, even during times of stress. Animal owners have also been found to enjoy lower rates of heart disease, as they have lower cholesterol and lower triglyceride levels.

2. Individuals who have suffered a heart attack have been found to live longer if they own a pet.

3. Spending time with your cat or dog serves to boost the release of neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin, which result in feelings of contentedness, calmness and relaxation.

4. Pet owners are significantly less likely to experience depression.

5. In a survey of retirees age 65 and older, pet owners visited their doctor’s office about thirty percent less frequently compared to non-pet owners.

It’s not just cat and dog owners who enjoy these perks; even more “ornamental” pets like fish can bring benefits!