Pet ownership brings emotional, physical benefits

Posted on November 17, 2009 under Pet Health & Safety

Dogs and cats may actually lower our blood pressuresAcross the country, pet owners collectively spend more than $45 billion and countless hours on pet care, and never get as much as a thank you from the beneficiaries of these expenses and efforts. But according to one author and pet-lover, it is the humans who should be thankful to household cats and dogs for all of their selfless services.

John Archer, author of Evolution and Human Behavior, insists that pets provide emotional, physical and therapeutic benefits which are well worth the money, PennLive reports.

As Archer acknowledges, pets commonly induce emotional reaction in owners that are similar to how parents respond to small children. "They make us feel valued and important, they offer unconditional affection," he told the news source. "They provide rhythm to our lives and give us vicarious pleasure in watching them play."

Additionally, a variety of studies has shown that lower levels of stress and depression, greater development of social skills in children as well as better physical health are linked to pet ownership.

Research by veterinary studies professor Johannes Odendaal has determined that blood pressure is commonly reduced by 5 to 10 percent after interacting with a dog or cat, the news provider reports.

While animals continue to look out for human health, the North American Pet Health Insurance Association says veterinary insurance can be used to protect pet health and ensure the financial stability of the animal’s family.