Everyone knows that dogs bring immeasurable joy to our lives, but did you know that simply owning a dog can help to significantly extend your life?
That’s right! Observational studies have shown that dog owners, especially those who live alone, are less likely to die prematurely. According to Dr. Caroline Kramer, a professor who specializes in endocrinology at the University of Toronto, “dog ownership was associated with a 24% reduction in all cause mortality.” This is because owning a dog can support a healthier lifestyle and protect us against illnesses such as depression, anxiety, cardiovascular disease, and many more.
While scientists don’t know the exact cause of this, there are several popular theories. One belief is that people who own dogs get more exercise than those who don’t. Because dogs require a certain level of physical activity, this encourages dog owners to create a daily routine of walking and other activities that support cardiovascular health.
My patient’s dog died a few months ago and he stopped walking. He hasn’t gotten a new dog because his wife was worried that she would be left alone to take care of it. I wrote this Rx and told him to tell his wife that it’s my job to keep him around #DogRx #ExerciseIsMedicine pic.twitter.com/yrJXPygzXM
— William Suh, MD (@willsuh76) October 29, 2018
In addition, dogs are a great source of companionship and affection. They give people a sense of comfort and unconditional love that can support our health. This can help combat illnesses such as depression and anxiety as well as reduce blood pressure.
Research shows that dogs are great for your mental health: "Dogs offer companionship, reduce anxiety and loneliness, increase self-esteem, and improve overall mood." #WorldMentalHealthDay https://t.co/1lK2rhLEsV
— Christopher Ingraham (@_cingraham) October 10, 2019
So, if you’re looking for a reason to bring a dog into your home, a longer, healthier, and happier life might be the best one yet!
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