Health Benefits of Having a Dog or Cat
Did you have a cuddly dog or cat in your home in the early stages of your life? If you answered yes, then, according to a small study conducted by the journal Pediatrics, you were more likely to be healthier than children who didn’t have a house-hold pet.
Researchers in this study followed 397 kids in Finland from birth until age 1. The children’s families also aided in the study by reporting the children’s interactions and/or contact with the dogs or cats in their house on a weekly basis.
Results of children in dog-owning homes illustrated fewer respiratory tract and ear infections, as well as less of a need for antibiotics. Cats did show some beneficial effects, however, the results were not as strong as households with dogs.
As for adults, studies have shown multiple heath benefits for owning dogs or cats, including: Boost of oxytocin (feel-good hormone), less of a chance for depression, lower risk of heart attack, lower blood pressure, boost of self-esteem, and lower work place stress.
To read more on this study and the health benefits of owning a dog or cat, check out this article on the Huffington Post’s Health Section