The Importance of Pets

Mrs.+Ninan%27s+pet+rabbit%2C+Mr.+Bubbles.

Timothy Ninan

Mrs. Ninan’s pet rabbit, Mr. Bubbles.

Approximately 85 million American families own a pet, according to a survey conducted by the American Pets Products Association. For many, whether it be a dog, cat, bird, horse, reptile, or any other number of possible pets, there has been a non-human friend by our side for the majority of our lives. It is obvious we affect the lives of our pets– we can easily determine their lifestyle, whether it be purse pooch or farm dog, but how do our pets affect us? Multiple sources show that our pets profoundly influence our lives, and can become rather important to our health.

The benefits of owning a pet are seemingly endless. According to Transitions Life Care’s article on said advantages, a long list presents multiple positives to this form of companionship. One of those facts includes the simplicity of having company– during the lockdown, we were all desperate for connection and became grateful for our brothers and sisters and whoever else we lived with just to see another face. In this respect, pets can offer the same sense of lessened solitude. In addition, the responsibility of caring for a pet– feeding them, grooming them, walking them– can help many suffering from poor mental health, knowing another living thing is depending on them and needs them. If that was not enough, having a pet also opens possible topics of conversation with others, which can help in expanding relationships.

Having a pet can also positively influence you on a physical level, according to the CDC. Some of those advantages include a decrease in blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglyceride levels. Walking a dog or getting exercise for your cuddly companion also helps in getting your blood flowing and improves your own exercise regimen so that both pets and their owners stay healthy. On top of these factors, stress levels have been found by scientists to decrease after fifteen minutes of petting your animal– your body reacts to this action by releasing “happy” hormones including serotonin, oxytocin, and prolactin.

In difficult times such as these, it becomes increasingly apparent just how important our pets are to our mental and physical health– but it comes as no surprise that their presence is nothing but positive if their adorable demeanor was not enough!

 

Works Cited links:

https://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/health-benefits/index.html#:~:text=There%20are%20many%20health%20benefits,depression%20by%20giving%20us%20companionship.

The Importance of Pets in Our Lives