There’s nothing quite like that comforting feeling of a sweet, furry companion that comes running to greet you after a long day. Pets are family members to so many of us. We love them, and they love us, unconditionally.
These days, it’s estimated that nearly 70% of American households actually count a pet as one of their family members, and it’s not surprising why. Pets do so much more than provide us with something cute to love on. They actually provide many incredible health benefits. So, let’s take a closer look at some of the ways pets impact our emotional and familial well-being each and every day.
Health Benefits of Pet Ownership
Having a pet by your side isn’t just a great mood booster. They also provide incredible physical health and emotional health benefits, including:
- Minimizing Stress – Owning a pet can help significantly reduce stress levels. Studies have actually shown that the company of a pet during routine tasks lowers stress levels compared to the companionship of people during those same tasks.
- Lowering Blood Pressure – For those who suffer from high blood pressure, pets have been proven to help lower blood pressure and heart rates. The soothing companionship and dedication to their owners helps to alleviate stresses that you may be internalizing. Pets allow you to shift focus and generally encourage an overall healthier lifestyle.
- Reducing Anxiety – Pets can also help reduce anxiety. This helps with everything from your mental health to alleviating chronic pain, especially for those who suffer from migraines, arthritis, or are recovering from illness or injury.
- Improve Heart Health – Those with pets have even been found to have lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels than those without.
Home and Family Benefits of Pet Ownership
Pets ownership also provides many wonderful benefits within your family circle and home. They can help:
- Socialize – Children who grow up around pets tend to learn better social skills. Pet ownership even increases their verbal skills and helps hone emotional awareness.
- Teach Responsibility – Through the care of pets, kids and parents alike learn responsibility, gain confidence, and even learn how to better express emotions.
- Reduce Loneliness – People who live in homes with pets tend to experience less feelings of loneliness, as pets are often instant mood boosters, improving your overall outlook on life and your surroundings.
- Reduce Illness – That’s right. Kids who grow up in homes with pets tend to get sick less often, as they’ve built up stronger immune systems.
- Provide Safety – Dog ownership, specifically, gives a lot of families increased feelings of security, and rightfully so. Not only will they act to protect you, they also act as a sort of automatic deterrent to any would-be home invaders who see them through the window or in the yard.
Bringing a pet into your home is great for the whole family. They have the ability to provide so much positivity to our lives and so many amazing health benefits. And, of course, that love and care goes both ways. So, the next time your happy little buddy comes running your way, say a little extra thank you.