They say a dog is man's best friend. According to biologist Kelsey Witt, "Dogs are one of the earliest organisms to have migrated with humans to every continent." Humans' relationships with dogs go far back. But these days, not everyone has the means or the environment to care for a dog. While dogs are commonly man's best friend, other animals can be just as helpful and stimulating to mental health. Here are some great reasons why dogs (or any animal) can make you happy!
First of all, dogs provide companionship. These benefits can be physical, emotional and social, and include lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, reducing anxiety and elevating our mood, and promote social well-being.
Oxytocin is a hormone that is sometimes known as the " Cuddling Hormone." It is stimulated by touching, and fills us with a sense of security and happiness. It's the same hormone that's released when a mother holds an infant in her arms.
3. Get Outside
4. Increase Immunity to Allergens
Getting outside will expose us to all sorts of different things, and actually for the better.
5. Increase Social Network
As soon as you get your dog, you'll have to walk it all around the neighborhood at hours when you previously wouldn't be out. You'll notice all of your fellow neighbors that have dogs and have to make new friends!
6. Keep Active
Dogs require a lot of energy. From playing fetch to taking long runs or enjoying a day at the beach, you'll be sure to get a workout!
Think of dogs as a preview to having a baby! They help prompt those maternal or paternal instincts and get you thinking about what values are important to you in raising one of your own.
8. Distract Yourself from You
One of the great things about having a dog is that it takes a lot of time and energy. Now this can be stressful to balance, but ultimately, you'll not have the time to spend idly worrying over personal drama. Your life now becomes secondary to your pet.
Dogs need you as much as you need them! There are so many ways to get involved and adopt a dog!
10. Teach Responsibility
In young kids, it's important to teach responsibility. When a child is tasked with roles like feeding, playing, and making sure the dog is healthy, he or she will feel a greater part of the family.
11. Teach Patience
Especially with puppies, training requires a lot of patience. But this patience will be rewarded with great tricks and obedience! (We hope!)
12. Good Listeners
Forget the therapist. Sometimes all you need is a dog to listen to all of your problems. We promise, they'll always take your side.
13. They Care About You
Dogs are filled with unconditional love. If you care for them well, odds are they'll care for you in return. They constantly show affection!
14. They Protect You
Depending on the kind of dog you have, some are known to be protectors or watch dogs. This can come in handy. No need for that security squad!
Not all routine is bad. Dogs are creatures of habit, and their discipline can help rub off on you.
Are you ready to go pet shopping yet? We hope we've convinced you that having a pet is an enormous help to your mental health! Not only are dogs cute to look at, but their emotional capacities are remarkable. They only thing they need is love!