The Health Benefits of Owning a Pet

They're always pleased to see you and who doesn't love to cuddle with their four-legged friend, so maybe it's no surprise to hear there are numerous health benefits of owning a pet.

Mental health benefits of owning a pet

There's the cardiovascular and lowered blood pressure benefits that come in part from the increased exercise, but simply stroking a pet has can have health benefits too. 

A recent study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, shows that dogs can help strengthen immune systems of children against allergies and asthma if they are exposed to them, as well as barnyard animals, within the first three months of life.

Benefits of animals to humans 

Research shows that 72 percent of pet owners say that spending time with their pet helps reduce stress and improves wellbeing, as well as:

  • Pets alleviate stress
  • They help fight depression
  • Pets help with feelings of isolation and depression
  • They help maintain physical activity

It all comes down to a more diverse biome - a naturally occurring community of flora and fauna, according to Dr. Jack Gilbert, Director of the Microbiome Centre at the University of Chicago.

Dogs especially can add 'good' bacteria and microbes inside homes because they play outdoors more frequently than other pets.

The 'cuddle hormone' oxytocin is also released into the brain when we spend time with our dogs. Scientist and author Meg Olmert says a cuddle with your pup triggers oxytocin release, helping you to bond with your pet and alleviate stress. 


Interested to learn more? 

The microbiome explained - why are microbes could be the key to our health.

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June 08, 2022
Categories: Ambassador Blog