There are already countless great reasons to get a dog, but here is yet another one: Dogs can make you healthier!
It’s true. Study after study has linked dogs to health benefits as diverse as improved mood and reduced risk of heart disease. How can a dog be so healthy? Well, it’s all about how you get along with them and what you two do together. Here’s how to make the most of your health by making the most of your time with your furry friend.
Gear Up For A Walk (Or A Run)
Dogs are healthy even if you discount the effects of the exercise they give their owners, but let’s be clear. Frequent walks are a huge part of the reason that dog owners are known to live longer than their dog-less counterparts. Regularly getting out of the house and walking around with your pal is healthy, and having a dog will keep you on track and exercising regularly. You can even go for a jog with your dog, provided you have a big enough breed to keep up.
Your walks should be as healthy for your dog as they are for you, so keep your pet’s comfort and safety in mind. Dog collars and harnesses can hurt your pet if they aren’t well designed, well made, and properly put on. Do your research, suggest the experts who designed the popular (and veterinarian-approved) Joyride Harness. A good harness will be comfortable for your pet while still allowing you to control them with a reliable leash. Bad harnesses and collars can put too much pressure on your pet’s neck or cause uncomfortable pulling on their limbs and fur. Choose wisely.
Walks can be leisurely and fun, but there’s still some “business” to attend to out there. You shouldn’t just be getting exercise with your dog when he or she needs to go to “the little dog’s room.” When it’s not bathroom time, it could still be playtime.
Throwing a ball or simply running around with your dog is a great way to get exercise for both you and your pet. It will make your pet healthier and may help it live longer, and it will do the same for you.
Your Mind On Pets
Did you know that pets reduce stress levels? Did you know that petting a dog can calm you down? How about the fact that dogs make their owners less susceptible to depression?
It’s all true. To reap these benefits, all you have to do is spend time with your pet. Pet your dog, hang around in the same room as your dog, or play with your dog—all of these things will improve your mental health if you make them a habit.
Another reason that dogs are so healthy is that they encourage us to socialize in healthy ways. Dog owners can get together at dog parts or run into neighbors while walking their pets. And dogs can have play dates just like kids can—you may even want to bring along a few alcoholic beverages or a nice snack to share. Meanwhile, the less healthy parts of your social life—like partying late into the night—are made more difficult thanks to the responsibilities of dog ownership. That means that owning a dog will get you out of the house and socializing in healthy ways more often while cutting down on the negative habits that we too often equate with “socializing.”
The Many Benefits Of Having A Dog
Having a dog can do so much for your health, and you can maximize these benefits by making smart choices about how you care for and spend time with your dog. Enjoy your dog and your longer, healthier life!