Man’s best friend is truly a gift to mankind. Our furry little friends don’t just offer companionship, they can be contributing a lot for your health too. This may be a hard concept to think about when you see your pooch laying on the sofa sniffing their own behind, but owning a dog can provide multiple health benefits.

Professionally trained dogs can help people with disabilities. For example, there are Seeing Eye dogs for the blind and service dogs for people who suffer from PTSD. There are also dogs that are used in the line of duty such as canine bomb sniffing dogs and police hounds.

Studies have compared well-being of dog owners from people who didn’t own pets. Dog owners had a significant healthier well-being than those of the average person. There is a lot of proven facts about the health benefit of being a pet owner. Dogs are said to improve mental, emotional and physical health.
If you are planning to have a dog or you have one already, here are a few reasons to love your dog more.

Health Benefits of Having a Dog

They Can Detect Cancer

This has been an old myth in the dog owner universe, but in a case study done in the late 80’s where a patient reported her mutt constantly sniffing a mole that was present in her leg, and at one time even tried to bite it off. The patient grew worried about the dog’s behavior and went to get the mole checked out. It turns out the mole was a malignant melanoma. There are other cases that stated their dogs were able to pre-detect their cancer tumors. It ranges from breast cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer and more. A Study was done on a trained Labrador Panda about detecting colorectal cancer from stool samples of patients. Panda was able to detect 33 out of 37 early stage colorectal from the samples. How they do it is still a mystery to us.

They Can Reduce Stress

Dogs are said to reduce stress of dog owners. Simply watching your dog play or petting he/she at night can significantly reduce stress. A study was done on dog owner’s stress levels. It turns out dog owners produce less stress hormones in the body and the negative side effects of stress are often outweighed by the comfort of caring for a dog. People that do not own dogs, but are in favor of the furry animals are said to have better moods after seeing a dog in a video or in real life.

They Can Reduce Anxiety

Dogs can also lower anxiety levels. They work as a great security blanket for people who suffer from anxiety. Dog’s companionship can build self-confidence in anxious people, they can help them to be less conscious in the world outside their comfort zone. Dogs teach humans how to live in the moment and to enjoy the little things. This aspect of companionship, usually rub on the owners. There are special dogs for people with anxiety/depression/personality disorders that are allowed to travel with them for comfort.

They Can Keep You Moving

This is a common health benefit for dog owners. Dog’s love to play and walk, they love it more when you play with them. Dogs will often beg to be played with or even run around the house playing. Children that owned dogs are more likely to spend their time doing physical activities than children that don’t. Adult dog owners are more likely to be physically active in the day compared to adult that don’t own dogs.

They Can Lower the Risk of Allergies

Dogs are one of the most known allergy triggers, but children who grew up in a house of a dog owner have reduced chances of developing allergies in their lifetime.  Children that grew up in a house with dogs have better immunity to any pet allergies and will last through their adulthood.

They Can Improve Heart Health

Dog owners are less likely to have heart problems and high blood pressure. A study done in China concluded that people that owned dogs have better sleep quality at night and are less likely to get sick. The act of playing and petting your dog can lower blood pressure and heart rate. Dog owners also have a slightly lower cholesterol levels than the average person.

If those health benefits aren’t enough for you, dogs can also make you happier and lower depression. Dogs can also help the elderly, they work as a great companion and guardian, especially for people who battle Alzheimer’s. Dog big or small, can also give you protection, dogs are able to sniff out unfamiliar scents in your house. Making sure that burglars are detected easily. If those health benefits still aren’t pleasing you, then try looking into those cute puppy dog eyes and try to say no.

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