Did you know the pooch that stole your heart is also good for it? That’s right, turns out your four-legged friend may be just the pup-scription for what ails you!
1. Heart-Healthy. Reports show a link between owning a dog and a decrease in cardiovascular problems like high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. High- paws for happy hearts!
#2: Built-in Diet Support. “Uh, I’m not stealing, mamz! Just making sure you don’t cheat… Lemme take care of that cookie/cheezburger/turkey sammich.”
#3: A Puppy A Day. Forget about apples, daily time with your pooch may prevent illness and help you recover more rapidly when you do get sick. But, no judgment if ya want to keep eating those gummy vitamins, too. They are yummy!
#4: Keep Calm and Cuddle a Canine. After only a few minutes with your dog, your body goes through hormonal and chemical changes that decrease stress. As if you need another reason to snuggle that cute lil fuzz-butt!
#5: Paw-sonal Trainer. Dogs make great workout partners! In fact, dog-friendly workout routines like “Go Fetch Run” are really gaining steam. Check it out!
#6: Snack Attack. Diabetic owners can train their puppehs to sense an on-coming blood sugar drop and alert them that it’s time for a snack (and maybe a treat for being the cutest alarm ever).
#7: See a Specialist. Smarty-pants pups can be trained to fill all kinds of health care roles, from seizure prevention pups to autism service dogs.
#8: Fewer Colds. “Oh hai, you’re home! I know u r worried about getting sick, so I brought in some dirt and germs to build up your immune system ‘cause I ruv you. Belly rubs now, plz?”
#9: Don’t Worry, Be Happy. What could be more healing than the devotion of your darlin’ puppeh? Plenty of therapists actually prescribe pet interaction as a way to deal with and recover from depression.
#10: Sneaky Exercise. Even if you’re a total couch potato, you can still meet the minimum recommendation for physical activity by taking your pup for a 30-minute walk each day. Not so hard!
#11: I Can Haz Productivity. Research shows that looking at cute animal pics at work can boost your mood and increase performance. So go ahead and snap a selfie with your favorite pup. #nofilter
#12: Self-Esteem Boost. People with pets – particularly of the pooch variety – have higher self-esteem, are more extroverted and less lonely than their pet-less counterparts. Welcome to Strut Town. Population: You!
#13: Allergy-Prevention.”Guess what, Tiny Bald Hooman…u r way less likely to develop allergies later thankz to hanging out with me. U r welcome for da kisses!”
#14: Dogs Vs. Cats. A UK study by Dr. Deborah Wells shows that sharing your home with a dog improves your mental and physical health more than owning a cat. Dogz FTW!
#15: Walks Do A Body Good. Put down the milk and pick up a leash! The weight-bearing movement of walking strengthens your bones and sunshine throws in a healthy dose of vitamin D. Heck, you’ll feel so doggone good, ya might even be up for a lil Prancercise sesh!
#16: Better Concentration. Kids with ADHD are shown to benefit from the responsibilities of pet care and exercise from playtime. A pawsome win-win situation!
#17: Love Is All You Need. Research shows that loving and being loved affects everything from longevity to your physical appearance. Aren’t you lucky you have a supply of the high-quality, unconditional stuff from your four-legged friend?
Sources: WebMD, ABC News, Medical News Today. Huffington Post, Psychology Today, Go Fetch Run