A dog or cat is in better health. The positive effects of animals on humans

“Hold the dog close to your heart, take the cat in your arms” – Jan Kachmarek from Cabaret Elite once read about the unique garden that unites people and pets. However, scientists are increasingly saying that owning a dog or cat can have real and measurable benefits to human health. Both in terms of physical fitness and disease prevention, as well as better well-being and mental health.

The results of research published in 2019 show this Owning a dog reduces the risk of death by 24% and up to 31 percent. if heart disease is found in the animal’s caregiver. In turn, other scientists believe that a dog at home can also be responsible for lowering blood pressure and a better lipid profile. Another analysis shows that people who have a stroke or heart attack due to quadrupeds live longer, especially if they are single.

Better physical condition is one thing, but not for the dog Pets also have a very good effect on our mental health. Researchers have shown that pets can improve owners’ response to stress and reduce the risk of depression and loneliness. Dogs can also help increase self-esteem among people.

A dog that eats vegetables? Experts are divided

The 2020 pandemic shed a slightly different light on how our relationship with dogs and cats looks. Although pets generally have a positive effect on caregivers, some have been observed during locking disturbing regularity.

A survey conducted in the UK showed this most pet owners are very concerned about the fate of their pets after the onset of the pandemic. This was primarily due to access to veterinary services and uncertainty about what would happen to pets when a guardian became infected with the coronavirus. There were also concerns about the availability of dog and cat food in stores.

After all, most pet owners considered them significant psychological support during pandemics and quarantine. Pet caregivers showed less reduction in mental states during periods of limited mobility and did not feel alone during isolation. Thus, the pandemic turned out to be a new way for animals to help us – they improve our mental health when we are in a state of forced isolation.

The domestic cat is an attractive companion and killer of biodiversity

When we consider the effects of pets on humans, the question may arise as to which species affects us best: dogs or cats? Although studies to date have shown many benefits to both cats and dogs, scientists see more benefits in the latter. They are also the subject of more research.

As a rule, dogs are loved and valued by humans more than cats. This is confirmed by statistics – a study conducted in the United States dogs are taken to the vet twice as often as cats. Their owners are also more restrictive in following their doctor’s advice and are more prone to prevention than cat owners.

Confirmation advantages of dogs over cats or there may be a theory that scientists better treat human loneliness. However, surveys conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic showed that the difference was relative – both dog and cat owners acknowledged that the vast majority of pets helped cope emotionally with the stress caused by the epidemic and had a positive impact on the health of pet families. .

Yakub Vojaychik

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