Are you thinking of getting a new puppy? Puppies can bring so much joy into your life and your family. When we decided to adopt Toby, we didn’t go to the shelter with a puppy in mind. But Toby had us in mind! I always thought a puppy would be too much work with house training and chewing. Though it was a lot of work, Toby was worth it. Puppies need lots of love and lots of training, but they can also help you out! Having a pet can help reduce stress.
Pets Can Help Reduce Stress
For National Puppy Day, I’m sharing advice from Erin Askeland, CPDT-KA and Training and Behavioral Expert at Camp Bow Wow (North America’s largest and most trusted pet care franchise).
I love my pets, and they are so intuitive as to our moods. Even though I’ve seen the research on how pets reduce our stress, having Toby, Midnight, Indy, Sammy, and (fostering) Boo Boo does reduce my stress. When I’m really sad, Toby always gets on my lap and helps me relax.
Some studies show that people begin to feel less anxious after spending less than an hour with an animal. There are endless benefits from lowering your stress level and while the things that we find stressful in our lives are often hard to eliminate, adding an animal to your life can help.
Read on to find out some of the tips and insights Erin has on the benefits of having a puppy and how our pets can reduce our stress.
- General Benefits: There is a reason they say dogs are man’s best friend. Having a pet is something that everyone should experience at some point in their life. Pets can be calming, mood lifting, empathetic, and so much more. Just watching puppies and kittens play is enough to boost my mood. Pets also teach you how to be selfless and responsible. They give you someone else to focus on other than just yourself.
- Help with Depression: In some cases, therapists suggest that patients suffering from depression adopt a pet. An animal will love you unconditionally and also be a great friend and listener. People with depression often benefit from having a pet, as the animal can help them get out of the house.
- Health Benefits: There are other health benefits associated with pet ownership (particularly dogs). Many studies show that owning a pet has a positive impact on cardiovascular disease, hypertension, infection control, allergies, stress related problems, blood pressure, and psychological issues.
- Engaged Mind: One key to a healthy mind, especially for those who are elderly, is staying engaged with others. A pet is often a conversation starter and being out with a pet often warrants questions or comments from passersby. Bringing your dog to a dog park is a great way to meet new people with similar interests.
- Build Your Children’s Confidence: Having a dog in the home can build confidence and manage anxiety and stress in children. Children who struggle with reading or math can gain confidence when reading aloud or reciting multiplication tables to their dog.
- Excuse to Play: Training and playing with your dog also provides mental stimulation, helps unleash creativity and alleviates stress. Having a dog will also encourage you to exercise since you’ll need to walk him regularly.
- Routine: Having a daily schedule can help reduce stress for any individual. Having a dog that relies on you at specific times each day (feeding, walking, and sleeping) can help establish a routine.
How has your pet helped you reduce stress? If you don’t have a pet, are you considering one? Consider adopting on National Puppy Day!