5 Wholesome Benefits of Having a Dog

Dogs have been referred to man’s best friend for years. These happy-go-lucky creatures are widely known for their ability to provide comfort, companionship and mental assistance to their owners, which are just some of the many benefits of having a dog. Research has shown that dog owner’s benefit both emotionally and physically from having the four-legged creature as a companion.

The Many Benefits of Owning a Dog

Whether you are a dog owner and already familiar with the value of dogs, or a potential future dog owner, who has yet to discover the benefits, here are a few ways owning a dog can improve your life.

Physical Health Improvement

AHA Journal states having a dog can bring its owner many physical health benefits. It has been reported, by American Humane, a person who owns a dog is more likely to receive the correct amount of exercise recommended by doctors. For one, having a dogmeans having to take him or her out for his or her daily exercise. This encourages a person to get out of their house more frequently, as well as adds activity to a person’s daily routine.

Furthermore, petting, playing and caring for a dog can help lower high-blood pressure in their owner. Because of the calming effect dogs often naturally possess, their owners are likely to have a lower risk of heart disease. In fact, dogs have been linked to people experiencing a high-survival rate after a heart attack.

So, a benefit to having a dog is having a friend who will help keep you fit, active and healthy!

Less Allergies

Being exposed to an array of bacteria can help a person develop a stronger immune system. So it is a good thing that dogs naturally bring about all kinds of bacteria!

Specifically, Microbiome showcases a study that identifies a correlation between pregnant women, who are regularly exposed to dogs, and their newborn children. It has been noted that these children are more likely to have little to no allergies, and are at a lower risk of becoming obese or developing asthma throughout their lives.

Enhanced Social Skills

Research conducted by Dog Trust, a welfare dog charity in the UK, has proven that people with dogs come off as more approachable individuals. It is more common for strangers to strike up a conversation with another stranger if he or she is out with a dog. So a person, who is single, is more likely to look attractive with a dog accompanying him or her. Not too shabby huh?

Moreover, going to a dog park will not only increase a dog’s chance of finding companionship but their human’s as well. Having a dog helps people stay socially connected, make new acquaintances and can act as an icebreaker for making conversation with the new next-door neighbor.

Emotional Well-Being

The bond created between a dog owner and his or her furry little friend has been linked to reduced feelings of loneliness and depression. Stressed-out college students, the elderly and those who suffer from PTSD can all be great potential candidates for obtaining the benefits of having a dog. Dogs are able to ease symptoms of anxiety, as well as can be trained to provide specific assistance to those who are in need of therapy. When it comes to human emotion, dogs are able to detect emotions better than other animals. So your furry little friend will most likely be by your side when he or she feels you are sad or in distress, providing extra emotional comfort for you.

Man with Yellow Labrador dog

Increased Happiness

On an even happier note, having a dog can increase levels of good feelings such as compassion, generosity and empathy in both children and adults. A child growing up in a household with a dog will more likely be compassionate towards people and animals. And, having to care for another living creature, means practicing responsibility, which can enhance a dog owner’s self-worth (as well as teaching them a valuable skill!) 

It has also been scientifically proven that a benefit to having a dog includes increases in both dopamine and oxytocin levels in a person. So, playing with a dog does not only uplift your mood but can also aid in strengthening your long-term memory.

Simply put, having a dog to care for can make a person happier.

Still Debating on Getting a Dog?

Although having a dog is a responsibility, the amount of work put into caring for a canine will be worth the amount of joy he or she will bring to your life. And as your dog will keep you healthy, it is only fair to provide the same amount of love back to your new four-legged friend. We, at the Acoma Animal Clinic, in Tucson, will always be happy to help in providing the best care for your new best friend.

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