Here at DLA, we’re big fans of our canine companions. Our dogs are important members of our families, and we try our best to give them the lives they deserve.
And in turn, they give us their best. Yes, there are many health benefits of having a dog!!
Who knew that furry friend of yours could actually be really good for your health?!
Health Benefits of Having a Dog
These are some of the many benefits of having a dog.
#1 Great for Heart Health
Several studies show that dog owners have lower blood pressure than non-owners. This could be for several reasons, including the calming effect of a furry friend or the fact that dog owners tend to get more exercise.
What’s more, research even shows us that blood pressure goes down when a person pets a dog.
#2 Reduce your Stress
Even after the worst day, the feeling you get when you walk in the door and are greeted by your dog is enough to raise your spirits.
And science tell us there’s a real reason for that. It isn’t just a figment of your imagination. Even just 10 minutes petting a dog can significantly reduce your cortisol levels – that’s the stress hormone – making you feel more relaxed.
#3 Keep you Fit
If you have a dog, especially an active one, chances are you’re getting out for some physical activity on a regular basis. Walking, running, biking, hiking; it doesn’t matter what the activity is, if you’re moving, you’re benefiting.
Even tossing around a ball or frisbee in the backyard counts – you’re getting fresh air and moving around.
#4 Reduce the Risk of Allergies & Asthma
This one’s more for your kids or grandkids. Studies show that growing up with a dog in the house can significantly reduce the risk of developing allergies as kids get older. It starts early too – research shows this strength builds up even during pregnancy!
#5 Boost your Immune System
This is because of the good germs those dogs bring into our households, germs that work to strengthen our immune systems and mircobiomes, making them stronger and more resilient. As a result, people with dogs seem to get sick less often and less severely than people without them.
Yes, that includes slobbery doggie kisses. Bring ’em on!
#6 Stay Social
Research shows that having a dog can have a direct impact on the strength of your current relationships AND help you build new ones. One such study found that dogs can help spark new relationships and also keep your social networks thriving. Another showed that people with dogs had closer and more supportive relationships with those in their lives.
Just think about it: how many times have you stopped to chat with someone because of an initial interest in their (or your) dog?
#7 Dogs Make us Happier
We mentioned that dogs can help reduce stress, but did you know that they can also make us happier? It’s true.
Studies show that when you look into your dog’s eye, this increases the amount of oxytocin, the “happy hormone,” in the brain. And your dog loves that smile on your face when you’re happy – it in turn makes them happy.
There’s a reason dogs are know as “man’s best friend” (and woman’s best friend of course). So, be thankful for that ball of fur and give him or her an extra snuggle today!