Health Benefits of Pet Ownership: How Pets Help You Cope with the Pandemic

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There’s no denying how the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted our society in many ways. It has affected various aspects of our lives — from work to education down to business. Most alarmingly, it has posed a threat to our physical health, mental state, and overall well-being.

Amidst the global health crisis, one thing has surprisingly occurred — the increase of pet ownership. In fact, the American Pet Products Association released a COVID-19 Pulse Study showing that about 11.38 US households have owned a new pet in the pandemic. Another 24Pet ShelterWatch Report revealed that the number of foster pets in US homes has increased by about eight percent.

These facts and figures justify how pet ownership comes with some benefits. It’s no secret how having furry members of the family has a handful of health benefits. However, these pets are all the more beneficial during this pandemic.

That said, here’s how pets help you cope with the pandemic:

1. They make you feel good and happy

It’s amazing how pets can make you feel good. Think of how happy you become whenever you play with your cats or dogs. Even hearing birds chirp can be soothing, and seeing fish swim can be therapeutic. Hence, it’s best to have pets around your house, especially during these unprecedented times.

Some studies have shown positive health effects out of human-animal interactions. Pet interactions can lead to a decrease in cortisol levels. These can improve your mood, minimize your feelings of loneliness, and make you feel happy.

2. They provide emotional support

Animals may not be humans who can provide the utmost emotional support. They may not be able to communicate with you. However, their presence can make a world of difference, especially during this pandemic. Some pets may even be sensitive, where they can sense your loneliness and provide you comfort.

National Geographic posted a survey showing how animals have become a source of emotional support during the pandemic. Eight-seven percent of people who participated in the survey agreed that animals help them cope with the pandemic emotionally. Also, 95 percent said they couldn’t imagine living without their animals during this crucial time. Overall, 94 percent said animals do have positive effects on their families during this pandemic.

woman and her dog

3. They keep you company

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to home isolation for some people. It can be lonely for those who are living alone in their apartment and working from home. It can take a toll on people’s mental health and lead to symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression.

It’s best to have pets around your house during this pandemic. That said, consider buying or adopting cats or dogs, especially if you’re living alone. That way, you can have furry members to keep you company. Their presence can make a difference in your life during this unprecedented time.

4. They make you busy and preoccupied

Stay-at-home orders can make you stuck at home during this pandemic. You probably spend most of your time on your mobile phone, surfing the web, or playing online games. Too much digital consumption can be detrimental to your physical health. Even getting exposed to COVID-19 news can be harmful to your mental health.

As such, it’s best to own pets such as cats or dogs during this pandemic. Pet ownership is one of the best ways to keep you busy and preoccupied. For instance, you can have dog training, pet grooming, and animal stroll around your property. Ultimately, it’s better to become busy and distracted instead of overthinking and sulking during this pandemic.

5. They keep you physically active

The COVID-19 pandemic can lead people to a sedentary lifestyle. As mentioned above, you most likely get hooked online most of the time. For this reason, you can become physically inactive, which can negatively impact your overall health and well-being.

There are many ways to stay physically active during this pandemic. One of these is through pet ownership. Keep in mind that owning pets entail some sense of responsibility. For instance, you must bathe your dogs regularly, play with them, and walk them around once in a while. Ultimately, taking care of your pets will somehow make you physically active.

Having furry members of the family is indeed beneficial, especially during this pandemic. As discussed above, pets can positively affect your physical health, mental state, and overall well-being. If you haven’t got pets yet in the pandemic, consider owning some. While you take good care of them, they will take good care of your family, too.

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