The most common ways that people look to destress and to become more active include yoga, exercise, or taking up a hobby. But, did you know that owning a dog is excellent for this also? Some studies have shown that owning a dog can be more beneficial than a regular diet and exercise. Today, we are going to look at how a dog’s health and wellbeing ties into your own.
Playing with your dog
Playing with your dog is a great way to get moving and get out of the house. Walking your dog around the block, taking a light run, or a good game of tug-of-war can get your blood pumping and strengthen muscles. Doing these activities can also help you meet new friends who are also doing these activities with their dogs. Here are a few more ways to get you both moving and feeling young:
Swimming with your dog
Taking a swim at the beach or even a swimming pool with your dog is not only relaxing but also a great way to destress and improve your physical health.
Taking your dog on a walk/hike is always a great way to give them and you a sense of adventure that both of you are sure to love. If you do decide to take your dog on a hike remember to choose an easy hiking route that is safe for your dog.
Agility training is like an obstacle course for dogs. It sharpens their minds and gets you to bond with your dog during the training process. It’s a fast-moving course that requires a lot of agility for you both.
Caring for your dog’s health
Caring for a dog is one way to always feel needed and wanted. Your dog will rely on you for everything. Because of this, your dog will always think that you are the best person on the planet. Some common ways that you can care for your dog are:
Your dog will bond closely with you during the grooming process. It can be relaxing and pampering for you both. The gentle movements of brushing can help lower stress levels of both the dog and owner. This will release tension for you both and lead to a stress-free feeling.
While it may be true that not every dog likes going to the vet, it must be done. Taking care of your pooch and getting a clean bill of health can feel like an accomplishment. It shows that you can take care of yourself and another animal which is invaluable for people who may be down or depressed at times.
Dog’s typically have a morning and night routine. This routine can be great for people who are overly stressed or have anxiety disorders. These routines will help ground you and make you feel like you have better control of the day because you know what to expect next.
For people who are clinically depressed, they often feel alone or like no one cares or understands them. Dogs are a great cure for this because your dog will think you are the greatest person of all time and unconditionally. Ways that they cure loneliness are:
Always by your side
Dogs who are loyal to their masters never leave their sides. They are the friend that sees everything and has compassion about everything you feel.
Cuddling your dog is a great way to feel connection and love. Some dogs will seek out cuddles throughout the day, which makes you feel wanted. Cuddling or petting a dog can increase serotonin and oxytocin levels; these are the hormones responsible for happiness and feeling love.
Senior dog owner benefits
Senior dog owners also see a variety of benefits, including all the ones already mentioned. They can benefit from the companionship, routine, and physical activity it takes to care for a dog. But here are a few more reasons they benefit from owning a dog:
Some studies have shown that patients with Alzheimer’s that own dogs have fewer episodes and outbursts of frustration.
Taking care of your dog will help you stay active. This higher activity level (even short walks around the neighborhood) will help boost immunity responses to help fight off illnesses. This is especially vital in older generations around flu season.
Gives a sense of purpose
A lot of older people find themselves feeling diminished and useless. This feeling can lead to depression and even suicide. A dog will give them a reason to get up in the morning. Their life will be centered around caring for their dogs and in turn, will make them feel vital again. Their health will be closely tied to their dog’s health.
There are many reasons a dog can be of great benefit to any person’s mind and health. Dogs can be a great answer to depression or anxiety, or to get more active and lose a few pounds yourself. You don’t have to have these issues to benefit from owning a dog in the same ways.
David is a long-time dog lover and has been ever since he can remember. He gives useful advice and tips for dog lovers all over the world on his blog at DogDesires.
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