Pet owners have fewer illnesses. We now know new reasons, beyond companionship and a paw to lean on, that dogs, or really any pet, are important to so many individuals.

Pet owners seem to have fewer illnesses and recover quicker when they do get sick. They handle stress better and experience less depression. Petting your dog or cat not only lowers their pulse rate and blood pressure but also yours. If you have suffered a heart attack, you have an easier recovery and better survival rate if you own a dog. If there is a pet in the house, diabetics do better controlling their blood sugar and individuals who have had surgery or cancer seem to have a better recovery.Some pets can also be a great exercise machine. Unlike those bikes and steppers that collect dust in the basement, dogs will assure that daily walk or two. It’s good for both of you.

5 ways pets improve your quality of life

1) Relaxation of mind

Pets help to make your mind feel relaxed and you feel calm when you spent time with them. You will see that the pet likes it when you play with it and you also like that the pet is enjoying. You can make the experience therapeutic for yourself by doing a particular activity to relax your mind. You can give your pet a body massage that will help you to calm your mind too. You can rub hand up and down their body and they will feel good and this activity will help you feel relaxed too.

2) Reduced blood pressure

Pet helps in the reduction of blood pressure. It is natural that you feel happy when you are spending time with your pet. It makes your stress level go down and you feel relaxed. When you are relaxed your blood level goes down. You will have happy thoughts when you are with a pet as you are enjoying the time and for the happy thoughts, your body releases some hormones that help in the reduction of the blood pressure.

3) Health benefits

Pets like cats and dogs are used in hospitals so people can talk and release their stress. People had been using pets for therapeutic purpose for a long time. People are hesitant to share their feelings and talk openly in front of another human being but they are so open to talk in front of a pet. They talk freely and this is really good for the health of a person. People feel more comfortable now to speak in front of animals than actual human beings and for this reason, they are used to give therapeutic treatments to the patients in hospitals.

4) Increased appetite

Eating and sharing your meal is a very personal thing. If you eat with someone that you don’t like it will hamper your appetite and you won’t feel like eating much. On the other hand, if you eat with whom you really like will help in increasing your appetite. It has been reported in many cases that the eating habits of humans have been improved solely because of the presence of a pet in the room. This happens because we feel safe with our pets and can enjoy a meal happily.

5) Improving relationships

Keeping a pet helps in the improvement of your relationships with other people. A pet does not judge you by your clothes or by other parameters which humans use to judge you. You develop this attitude from being with a pet to be really carefree and be yourself. So when meeting new people you will be similar and you will attract those people that truly like who you really are.

Boosting your mental health

“Studies show that children who grow up with pets have psychological and health benefits,” says vet Pete Wedderburn, who adds companion animals are also good for angst-ridden teenagers.

“Animals are non-judgmental and love us unconditionally,” explains Dr Wedderburn, who points out that a beloved pet can make us feel better about ourselves.

Walking the dog can encourage us not just to take much-needed exercise — one of the major boosters for positive mental health — but to be more sociable. They’re great social enablers too because when you bring them for a walk and meet someone else with a dog along the way, the dogs will sniff each other and you’ll find yourself talking to the owner.

Research over the past 15 or 20 years has shown why so many people feel better around animals, says Dr Danny Holmes, spokesman for Veterinary Ireland and the Federation of European Companion Animals Veterinary Associations.

“Being with an animal increases the levels of certain happy hormones in humans, the hormones which are associated with good mood.

“It has an actual physical effect on our bodies because interacting with them creates a sense of wellbeing — they trigger the release of [the hormones] serotonin and oxytocin,” he says.

A pet can also help to reduce stress. A pilot study suggests that healthcare professionals, who spend as little as five minutes with a therapy dog, for example, experience the same levels of stress reduction as healthcare professionals who spend 20 minutes resting quietly.

Dr Holmes points to research carried out by the Mental Health Foundation in 2011, which found that 90 percent of people who had a cat felt their feline had a positive impact on their mental health as a result of looking after their pet and the physical comfort that came from stroking it.