We’ve all seen hilarious videos online of pets doing all kinds of shenanigans, but did you know that house animals are more than just entertainment? Actually, having a pet can have great psychological benefits for the owner! Let’s see how these four-legged companions have an influence on our mental health.
Pets help with depression
Pet owners who suffer from severe depression often state that the only reason they get up in the morning is because of their pets. Dogs are especially great motivators and can encourage owners to get physical activity, have regular meals and just have a laugh, which are all the things that help one deal with depression. Also, just feeling the warmth of their bodies and stroking their fur can help ease the mind.
They relieve stress
People of today, especially those living in urban environments, have quite hectic and busy lives. This commonly causes very dangerous stress levels in some people that can harm their mental and physical health. However, pets seem to know how to chase that stress away! Having regular contact with animals (especially petting them and talking to them) can lower stress hormone levels, heart rate, and anxiety. Most pet owners report instant stress-relief and sense of calmness when they see or interact with their beloved pets!
They give us purpose
Many people who struggle with mental health, report feeling like they lack purpose in life. However, since pets solely rely on their owners, they can often be just what mental health patients need. They offer meaning and purpose and push them to go forward.
They are great ice-breakers
People who have a rich social life and many friends tend to be happier and mentally more stable. Having a dog means going out for walks and toilet breaks which helps the owners get out and socialize with people. Plus, having a dog often leads to conversations with animal lovers and fellow pet owners that can end up as new friendships or even relationships.
They make for a great company
People who live alone might think they suffer from depression when all they need company. Luckily, pets provide amazing companionship and can be someone that will share their home and daily routine. Plus, bigger dogs can be great bodyguards and offer security.
Pets and seniors
Seniors often experience a lot of stress and loneliness that can be softened by pet companions. Animals have an especially good effect on people with dementia and Alzheimer’s. According to some research, Alzheimer’s patients who have a pet at home exhibit fewer anxious outbursts!
Should you get a pet?
If you feel like pets could have a positive influence on your life and mental health, you can always become an owner, but be careful. Having a pet is a great responsibility and requires some regular investing. You must provide them with fresh water, regular exercise, a lot of love and, most importantly, good food! However, if you give your dog or cat the right food, such as premium Royal Canin, they will be fit, healthy and ready to give you all the love and support you need. Just be careful to pick the right type for their age and weight and their food will provide enough nutrients and vitamins. Only a healthy and happy pet can be a good companion to you!
As you can see, having a pet is a wonderful experience, but if you happen to suffer from severe anxiety or depression, the responsibility can often be too much. However, once you get the hang of being a good pet owner, things will get easier and you’ll become a true little family.
There are only a few things in life more genuine than the love of a pet towards its owner. So, if you decide to get a furry companion, make sure to return the love and you’ll benefit greatly!
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One thought on “Pet Psychologists: Effect of Pets on Mental Health”
Hi Diana, thanks for sharing the info. Pets are really helpful for stress relief. I have two cats and both of them makes me very happy whenever I play with them.