The old saying goes, “You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours.” Pet owners know that while this saying may not be literally true, we do get a lot in return from our furry friends. We spend hours scratching backs, bellies and between ears, and what we get goes far beyond a few affectionate licks in return.
The full list of health benefits that pets bring us is long and can vary from pet to pet and person to person. For starters, there is the increased activity that comes with exercising and playing with your pet. Dogs especially need time and attention, and it’s pretty hard to say no to those big brown eyes begging us for just one more walk around the park! Whether you’re gone for hours or 37 seconds, pets make you feel like the most important person in the world every time you walk in the door. Pets can help us feel better, with decreases in depression, stress and anxiety and increases in laughter and happiness, just to name a few of the many benefits. New research is even showing that pets can help their owners monitor their blood sugar levels and improve their immunity and cholesterol levels. Children that grow up with pets may even have stronger immune systems!
Now, pets aren’t exactly a magic elixir that cures all ills, and they do require a lot of work. There is litter to change, food to buy, and vet bills to pay (and keep paying…), not to mention the “presents” they leave on the sidewalk, but our furry friends can help us live happier and healthier lives, and that after all, is what life is all about.
One year ago, the Hatch Health and Happiness mascot, Alfie, came home to us and so this episode of Tasty Tidbits and Fun Facts is dedicated to our favorite fur-ball! The past year has been filled with lots of laughs, walks, ear scratches (and a few mutilated stuffed toys)! Alfie is a therapy dog in training, and just passed his first (of many) tests to start spreading his furry smiles and puppy cuddles with the world. Stay tuned!