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Julia Stringer
Jun 24, 2022

Animals are GREAT for Your Mental Health

Furry friends have a lot more benefits than you may think. Of course, there’s the basic one which is obviously they increase happiness, personally when I look at my cat (Obi) or my dog (Teddy) I immediately feel better. There’s something about their fluffy, or not so fluffy in some pet’s cases, faces that give me instant serotonin. Anyone else get the sudden sensation that you want to squeeze your animals really hard? That sensation you get when seeing something cute, is called cute aggression.

Stress Reduction

So how do pets reduce stress? Pets provide excellent social support, improved moods, reduce blood pressure, encourage exercise, and offer company and unconditional love.

If you are an animal person, like me, it is quite possibly the most difficult thing in the world to stay in a bad mood when your animals are around you. Petting animals gives a great sense of stress relief. I can’t count on my hands the number of times I have been in over my head with emotions then and my cat has wondered into my room and POOF my bad mood was gone.

Having a dog in particular encourages exercise. Even if you can’t be bothered going outside for some fresh air, there’s that cute little face looking at you, hoping for a walk. Exercise is great for reducing stress and improving overall wellbeing. This is due to the endorphins releases when participating in any form of exercise. Plus, who says it has to be a dog you walk, I take my cat on walks all the time (see picture). Don’t have a dog (yet)? Take a look at how sport improves your mental health.

Loneliness NO MORE

Animals also give you company; they are quite possibly the best antidote to loneliness, with them being great snugglers and secret keepers. Telling your pets secrets and just talking to them on a daily basis actually has great benefits for your pet as well, it creates a bond between you and as your pet will start to feel that they are a part of your social circle. If you don’t have a pet don’t worry here’s some handy tips and tricks to help you cope with loneliness.

Office Dogs!

Start bringing animals into the office! Dogs specifically bring so many benefits while in office. They alleviate stress, make the general atmosphere friendlier. They improve morale and job satisfaction and encourage your employees to take breaks from their screens reducing the amount of work induced headaches, migraines, etc. However, make sure your animal is hypoallergenic. Some people have allergies, and we don’t want anyone whipping out an EpiPen!

I bet these stats will convince you

If you’re still not convinced about animals making life better, take a look at these stats from HelpGuide:

  • Pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression than those without pets.
  • People with pets have lower blood pressure in stressful situations than those without pets. One study even found that when people with borderline hypertension adopted dogs from a shelter, their blood pressure declined significantly within five months.
  • Playing with a dog, cat, or other pet can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine, which calm and relax.
  • Pet owners have lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels (indicators of heart disease) than those without pets.
  • Heart attack patients with pets survive longer than those without.
  • Pet owners over age 65 make 30 percent fewer visits to their doctors than those without pets.

Love furry friends? Check out our LinkedIn where we just introduced our newest member to the team, Teddy The Digital Barketing Apprentice!