Amazing Benefits of Pets on Human Health

by Drs. Foster and Smith on December 30, 2011

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Cat Dog **Guest post from Ellen B.**

The benefits that pets can have on our health is amazing. I first learned some of the facts a few years ago when I read the Physical & Medical Health Benefits of Pets article on PetEducation.com

The Dr. Oz Show recently had a segment on the benefits that pets can play on our health. Makes me happy that pets are getting the attention that they deserve! Dr. Oz and his guest, Betty White, talked about how elderly people who live alone but have a pet have to get up in the morning to take care of their pet. When they have a pet, they have to think about someone other than themselves. Here are the benefits of pet ownership that were shared on The Dr. Oz Show.

Health Benefits of Dogs

Dogs: Best pet to increase your overall health.
Dogs increase your overall survival. You walk them, so that gives you both exercise. Also, dog owners who have had a heart attack are 8 times more likely to live a year compared to non-dog owners.

Cats: Best pet to prevent heart attacks and strokes.
Cats dramatically help to reduce your blood pressure. Cat owners have a:

  • 30% less chance of having a heart attack.
  • 40% less chance of having a stroke.

Dr. Oz made the comment, “if drugs could do this, we’d prescribe pets!”

Birds: Best pet for detecting a diabetic attack.
Birds are so sensitive that they can actually identify when a person has diabetic problems, and birds can warn them of such. There are very subtle changes in body chemistry when you have diabetes, and birds pick up on it.

Betta Fish Aquarium Kit

Fish: Best pet to reduce stress.
Just staring at fish is very meditative, and for that reason, they reduce stress.

Rabbits: Best pet for fighting allergies.
When young kids are exposed to rabbits, they build a tolerance and are less likely to have allergies from that. Rabbits are really allergenic because they lick themselves all the time and get the dander off. This fact was new to me. Many years ago, my allergist warned me that the bedding used with rabbits and other small pets can cause havoc with allergies for some people.

Elderly with pets

To learn more about the health benefits pets have on people, click the link mentioned at the beginning of this post. The PetEducation.com article has different information such as how pets:

  • Have a positive impact cholesterol and triglycerides levels
  • Predict seizures
  • Diagnose cancer
  • Alert to hypoglycemia
  • Control ‘freezing’ in Parkinson’s Disease

Click here to see a video clip of this episode about pets on The Dr. Oz Show.

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January 11, 2013 at 9:44 am

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Rosemary December 31, 2011 at 7:57 pm

I though Ilka was going to GIVE me a heart attack about a week ago. We were visiting my in-laws over Christmas, and she went flying through the stationary half of a sliding window. She went so fast, I didn’t have time to react, and I don’t think she even realised it was there until she was through it. All she got were two little, tiny cuts, and a banged up nose. Didn’t even need to take her to a vet.

Lucky went throught the sliding half of the same window the last time we were visiting, two years ago. He wound up with a $300 vet bill and seven stiches. Also a near heart attack time for Mommy.

Ellen B. January 5, 2012 at 1:36 pm

Rosemary,

Ilka must be one tough cookie! Like you said, I think I would have had cardiac arrest!!! Maybe you should bring some window decals with you next time to put at doggie height. Glad she wasn’t hurt, and I hope you had a good Christmas. Thanks for sharing, we love your comments and willingness to share your experiences.

Ellen

Rich January 23, 2012 at 2:09 pm

It is so true, back in 2009 when my farther passed away we adopted an older dog from a shelter for my mother. It was a great thing for her, after all the years of being with my farther coming home to an empty home was only going to add to her grief. The dog helped her to cope with the loss and gave her company and something to care for. That dog could not be more spoiled and my mother is in good health and loves having her as a companion.

barry g. January 26, 2012 at 6:09 pm

remember dog spelled backwards is…………………….. G O D ………………..THINK ABOUT IT ! !

Therese Weiner, Patch O' Pits Therapy Dogs March 16, 2012 at 4:47 pm

My therapy dogs #CELEBRATE life by bringing joy to others… So I know first hand how much pets can help people. <3

Susan December 13, 2014 at 4:31 pm

When treated gently, cats make such sweet, loving, quiet companions that tend to calm the soul after a day of dealing with work stresses. Relationships with cats require such small contributions to reap such large benefits. Life without cats would be unthinkable and barren, indeed.

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