Pets & Your Health

We at the Humane Society of Ventura County hope that everyone has had a great start to 2017! During this time of the year, many people make resolutions for improvements to their own lives or the lives of others. One of the most common resolutions people make is to adopt a healthier lifestyle to improve their physical and emotional health.  

What better way to get in shape than with a friend! It’s a fact that having a pet can improve the overall quality of your health. We all love our pets for multiple reasons. One reason we can be especially thankful for is the health benefits we gain from our furry little friends. Adopting a new buddy can create a healthy lifestyle for you both physically and emotionally.

For example, adopting a dog means taking a dog for daily walks, hikes, or a run. These are fun and rewarding ways to get daily exercise into your schedule. Another physical health benefit is that people with dogs have lower blood pressure in stressful situations than those without pets.

Having a pet has many benefits to your emotional health as well. A pet companion can help prevent illness, as playing with a dog or cat can elevate levels of dopamine and serotonin, which help you to be more calm and relaxed. These newly adopted friends of yours can even make it easier meeting new people, being a natural ice breaker to start conversation. Research indicates that walking with a dog leads to more conversations with neighbors, other dog owners, and helps you stay socially connected. This leads to a more fulfilled and happier life.

We can't forget about our furry little friends that like to purr, as cats also help improve your health. Though cats are often known for their independence, the bond formed between a cat and its owner reinforces companionship. The benefits of having a pet go way beyond the friendships you make with them, and they deserve a big treat for the physical and emotional benefits you receive. You can always lean on your furry best friends for support; they are a true friend that really is a part of the family. 

Don’t forget, if you can’t adopt a pet of your own, volunteering at your local animal shelter can have similar effects on your health! Here at the Humane Society of Ventura County we rely on our volunteers to interact and socialize with the animals. Our 4.4 acre facility is a great place to get some exercise in while giving back to your community. It’s a win-win situation! If you are interested in learning more about our volunteer opportunities please contact our volunteer coordinator at 805-646-6505 or email [email protected].

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