7 Mental Health Benefits Of Owning A Dog
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If you already own a dog you know how amazing they can be.
You know how they impact your life in a number of different ways and you probably already feel like they’re making you healthier, even if you don’t really know all about it.
If you don’t own a dog you may be wondering what all the fuss is about or you may be wondering if you actually do get health benefits from owning a dog.
The short answer is that you absolutely do and these are just a portion of them.
What Are The 7 Mental Health Benefits Of Owning A Dog?
Be More Social
The number one thing that a dog is going to help you with is making you more social.
Now, you might not think that has anything to do with your mental health, but it actually can. The truth is, we as humans are social creatures.
When we don’t have anyone to socialize with we tend to start feeling depressed and it can lead to a number of different health conditions including diagnosable depression and anxiety.
Having a dog gets you talking to more people because you’re more likely to get outside the house (they have to be taken for walks, after all).
When you’re more playful you’re actually exercising different parts of your brain that are responsible for tasks throughout your life.
Being playful, spontaneous and fun is absolutely a way that you can become more successful, so make sure you’re paying attention to just how your dog influences you in these ways.
You might actually be surprised at the way you feel after you play with your dog.
Before long, they’re not going to be the only ones that are trying to get you to play. You’ll be engaging them in playtime entirely on your own.
Maybe it’s their lovable nature or maybe it’s the fact that they tend to be really excited and happy to see you all the time.
No matter what it is, dogs actually have a very strong impact on your stress levels.
It’s hard to feel stressed when you’re around them and that’s great for your overall mental health.
Feeling less stress can help reduce feelings of depression, anxiety and more.
Plus, it can help you in all areas of your life from your personal life to your professional life and more.
How can you feel lonely when someone is sitting right next to you?
That’s exactly what it’s going to be like with a dog because they are absolutely going to be sitting right next to you all the time.
After all, they want to make sure that you see them and you pay attention to them.
They’re going to give you someone you can talk to and play with anytime that you want. And they’re going to be more attentive to you than anyone else you know.
Whether it affects different parts of your brain or not, having a dog can just plain make you feel better.
You might find yourself smiling more frequently and just all around feeling happier.
Dogs are definitely able to do that and they’re great at improving your mood in numerous ways.
When you have a dog that’s super excited and just wants to play it can give you more energy and it can definitely make you smile.
That’s one of the best things about having a dog and it’s one of the best mental health benefits of owning a dog.
When you suffer from a mental health condition you might find yourself also struggling to have enough energy to go about your daily life.
But there are a number of different ways that you can feel more energy when you have a dog.
One of the main ways is that your dog is just going to be energetic themselves and that can definitely rub off on you.
They’re also going to require you to get out and do things, which can help you get a little bit more motivation and start to feel even better about your accomplishments throughout the day.
Relieve Mental Health Conditions
There are actually a number of different mental health conditions that can be aided through the use of dogs.
Children with autism have shown much the same result from interacting with dogs as the more documented interaction with horses.
Dogs can help them feel more connected and can also help to relieve some of the symptoms that they might otherwise experience.
Those who are struggling with ADHD may see more relief dealing with a pet than with parents or others in their lives.
The elderly see al to of improvement as a result of having a pet of any kind as well.
Cats or dogs can help because they help to relieve their stress and also give them someone to take care of, which can increase their level of motivation to continue getting up and around.
Those who suffer from Alzheimer’s may have fewer episodes of anxiety as a result of having a dog around the house.
That’s definitely going to be a great reason to look into it, though you should be careful that the individual is able to take care of a pet before you introduce one into their home.
Owning a dog can be an amazing experience just on its own, but when you can see how many great benefits there are to it?
That’s when it’s even better. Your dog is making your life complete in more ways than you might think. And they’re definitely going to help you mentally as well as physically.
Even better, this goes for dogs of all sizes and types. So if you have a tiny chihuahua or a great Dane, you’re going to get the same health benefits.
If you have a super energetic dog or a more low-key one it’s going to be the same. So make sure you pay attention to the mental health benefits of owning a dog.