Has your son or daughter been bugging you to get a dog? You may ask, “Why should I get a dog?”
After all, owning one is a big commitment and a lot of work. And of course, there are costs associated with dog parentship.
This article will give you solid reasons why you cannot afford to not have a dog in your home.
1. Having A Dog May Extend Your Lifespan
Without question, having a dog will force family members to be active. After being convinced by their children to get a dog, more often than not, it’s the father that will end up walking the dog. But it’s all good because a study involving 3 million participants concluded that owning a dog reduced the risk of mortality by 24% and a 65% reduction in cardiovascular death thanks to those daily walks around the neighborhood.
2. Better Health
Dog owners are less likely to develop Diabetes, Heart disease, and stroke compared to non-dog owners in a 12-year study. It also lowers cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It may also help people suffering from Fibromyalgia
3. Better Mood
Having a dog reduces depression, stress and anxiety. Playing with your dog releases happy hormones such as Serotonin, Dopamine, and Oxytocin which also helps regulate mood, sleep, metabolism, memory, and appetite. Petting A Dog Is Therapeutic. Just not on the head because they don’t like it. It lowers cortisol levels and makes us happy, calm, and expressive.
4. Stronger Immune Systems
Children exposed to pets very early in life tend to develop stronger immune systems and have fewer cases of respiratory and ear infections, Atopic Dermatitis and Wheezing. They also require a shorter course of antibiotics. What’s more, children ages 6-17 have fewer cases of Anorexia, Bulimia and Anxiety Disorders.
5. Weight Loss
A study concluded that you can lose 14 pounds a year by walking your dog 20 minutes a day 5 times a week without any dietary changes. Regular walking prevents your dog from developing separation anxiety. It also helps your dog maintain a healthy weight. A 20-30 minute walk is enough to meet the American Heart Association’s minimum recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week.
6. It Teaches Empathy
Children that have pets learn the difference between right and wrong early in life and tend to develop empathy, compassion, responsibility, and respect which they tend to carry into adulthood. Empathy teaches moral intelligence. Children who develop empathy have better social skills and are more popular with their peers.
7. Gives Comfort To The Elderly
Dogs can help the elderly cope with the effects of Dementia such as depression, agitation and loneliness. Dogs also give the elderly a sense of purpose and the warmth of companionship. Clearly, everyone in the family, young and old can benefit from having a dog.
Dogs have natural guarding instincts. Most are also light sleepers. When you’re sleeping at night, it’s comforting to know that someone with a keen sense of hearing is half-awake. However, some dogs are too friendly, like Golden Retrievers, making them bad guard dogs.
10. May Help You Stop Smoking
Getting a dog may be just what you need to quit the nasty habit. 28% of smokers who were informed of the dangers of what second hand smoke can do to their dogs considered quitting.
11. Reduces Social Isolation
Walking the dog means meeting other dog owners in the neighborhood. I personally never met my neighbors until we got a dog, Watson. Now I know almost all dog owners in our neighborhood. Humans (and dogs) are social beings and social isolation can be detrimental to our health. Social Isolation has been linked to Alzheimer’s, depression, heart disease, a weakened immune system and many more. A quick chat with your fellow dog owner can do wonders for your health.
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All information in this article is for educational purposes only and is not meant to replace your veterinarian’s advice.