The bond we share with our pets is powerful. The connection we share with our pets plays a big factor in our mental health. Research has been tested and proven that pets benefit mental health in positive ways. Animals help with a variety of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety and stress. They also provide companionship and help with loneliness.
The earliest research on pets and mental health dates back 30 years. Psychologists of the University of Pennsylvania conducted a study where they measured what happens to the human body when a person pets a friendly dog. They found that the human's blood pressure went down, heart rate slowed, breathing became more regular and muscle tension relaxed. These signs of reduced stress gave researchers evidence of the mental health benefits of pets.
Also pets like to live in the moment and reminds people to enjoy the NOW. This can help people become more mindful. Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to the present moment. Therefore, pets can help enjoy and appreciate the present moment.
Lastly, pets love us unconditionally. This is good for mental health and it stimulates the brain to release dopamine, the chemical involved in sensing pleasure. The companionship and love we feel from our pets is unmatched and most importantly remind us to be happy and stay pawsitive!