For thousands and thousands of years, we humans have always had a close affiliation with dogs. We refer to them as “man’s best friend” because they keep us company especially when we are lonely and they protect us from harm.
And when we lose a pet dog, it's like losing a part of ourselves.
Apart from the reasons above, dogs are amazing at helping us deal with stress and depression. There are a handful of ways that our dogs help us combat stress in our everyday lives.
1. Dogs help us calm down and relax
Dogs love to be petted, it relaxes and makes them feel loved as well as cherished by their owner. Apart from relaxing dogs, the act of petting also relaxes the dog owner too because it promotes what is known as feel-good hormones.
This reduces your heart rate especially if you massage your dog from head all the way to the tail. Massaging your dog also allows you to check for things like bump, wounds and even flees.
2. Dogs help us improve the relationship we have with people around us
When we have a loving relationship with our dogs, it improves the relationship we have with our fellow human beings. Dogs do not judge people or care about who you are or what clothes you have on.
Dogs just want to love and be loved by everyone they come in contact with. They are such affectionate creatures because they possess a playful and carefree mentality. It is this mentality that teaches us to enjoy lives and live each day like it's our last.
Looking after a dog teaches us how to love, trust others and be open. This improves the relationship we have with people we interact with and it is all thanks to having a dog around as a companion.
3. Dogs help us get in shape and be fit
Going to the gym is a good way to get into shape and relieve stress however; it can be costly for some. If you do not have the funds for gyms sessions, get yourself a dog. By going on long walks with your pet on a regular basis, you will get a ton of exercise.
That sense of responsibility a dog brings makes you not consider the gym as a stress reliever. You have a good stress reliever at home and all you have to do is show your dog love and schedule long walks. This is all the exercise you need to relieve stress.
4. Dogs bring laughter and joy
As pointed above, dogs are very playful animals and just watching behave naturally can bring laughter and relieve stress. And (besides their odours), dogs, just like people will show their humorous side when they are surrounded by people they trust.
When you and your dog have a very strong bond that is built by spending plenty of time together, they will not be shy to show you their funny side. They will do this often to cheer you up especially during times you are feeling low.
5. Dogs help you focus on the present
When a person is stressed out, it means they are lost in their thoughts and worried about things in their life. A dog brings you back to reality and helps deal with stress. A simple game of fetch and running around the park makes you focus on the present.
6. Dogs reduce a person’s blood pressure
High blood pressure is a health condition suffered by many people and it causes stress when not managed properly. There are tablets or pills out there one can take to keep this illness under control however; you won’t need pills if you have a dog at home.
Speaking to your dog does wonders for your health because it reduces your blood pressure. Simply making eyes contact or engaging in happy talk increase the bond you have with your dog lowering your blood pressure.
7. Dogs can improve a person’s eating habits
This point is all about being comfortable and sometimes we can lose our appetite if you are surrounded strangers for example when we are about to it. Dogs make us feel very comfortable when we are about to eat food.
Eating alongside your dogs gives you the feeling of not being judged, reduces stress and most importantly comfort. This drastically improves your eating habits because you are not worried about what other people are thinking regarding your diet.
8. Dogs will improve your self-esteem when you are stressed
Having a dog around makes you feel less depressed, fearful and lonely. These are just a few of the factors that bring about stress however, your four-legged friend makes you feel strong and boosts your self-esteem.
You will rarely be in a bad mood if you have a dog around. If there are a few personal issues in your life that are bringing about sleepless nights, rubbing your dogs or looking into their gorgeous eye will improve your mood instantly.
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9. Dogs help us deal with the most stressful of situations
A lot of people get nervous especially when it comes to things like a doctor’s appointment. Although this is good for you, the thought of going through it can be stressful.
A dog can help you remain calm which reduces your heart rate and blood pressure. Many people find having a pet around before a health check-up or procedure stress-free compared to having a friend, family member or a spouse.
10. Dogs make us feel less lonely
Loneliness can cause stress because you feel abandoned and lose hope of things in your life getting better. Having a dog makes you feel less lonely because they are not only a trusty companion; they make you more approachable to strangers.
When you are walking around in public with your dog, you have a higher chance of strangers walking up to you and starting a conversation. A Dog helps break the ice and can help you find new friends with similar interests to yours.