Pets, especially dogs, are known for a lot of things. They provide companionship, brighten our days, and are there for us when we need them. But did you know that dogs can also help reduce stress?
Yes, it’s true! Dogs have a way of putting a smile on our faces and making us feel relaxed, even in the most stressful situations. And that’s not just our opinion – studies have shown that dogs can indeed help reduce stress levels.
So how exactly do dogs reduce stress? Let’s learn more about the joy, comfort, and stress-reducing power of dogs.
How Can Dogs Help With Stress?
There are several ways in which dogs can help to reduce stress. One way is simply by providing us with companionship. Dogs are social creatures, and they naturally want to be around people. This companionship can be incredibly helpful when we’re feeling stressed or down. After all, it’s hard to feel stressed when you’re cuddling with a cute puppy!
That’s not all, though! Besides testimonials from dog owners about how their pets have helped them through tough times, there is scientific evidence to back up the stress-reducing power of dogs.
Studies have shown that interacting with a dog can help to lower cortisol levels (the “stress hormone”) and blood pressure. In other words, spending time with a dog can help your body to relax physically.
Dogs can also provide an emotional boost. They make us feel loved and appreciated, even when no one else seems to understand what we’re going through. And that feeling of being loved and supported can be incredibly helpful in stressful situations.
Power of Touch
Another way that dogs can help reduce stress is through the power of “touch.” Petting a dog has been shown to lower cortisol levels and increase levels of the “feel-good” hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin is sometimes called the “love hormone” because it’s associated with trust, relationship building, and sexual arousal.
As you know, dog owners share a special bond with their pets. But even if you’re not a dog owner, you can still benefit from the stress-reducing power of dogs. Just spending a few minutes petting a dog can help lower your stress levels and make you feel more relaxed.
In prison, criminals who have committed serious offenses have shown prolonged changes in their behavior after interacting with dogs. Through this interaction, many experience mutual affection for the first time. Likewise, when we’re stressed or anxious, stroking, hugging, or otherwise touching a loving animal can quickly calm and comfort us.
Besides providing companionship, a dog can also ease loneliness and motivate you to get outside and exercise, both of which can improve your mood and help relieve depression.
The Joy & Comfort That Dogs Can Bring
It’s no secret that dogs bring joy into our lives. They make us laugh, are always happy to see us, and provide unconditional love. But did you know that dogs can also help relieve anxiety and provide comfort in times of need?
For many people, their dog is their best friend. Someone who is always there for them, no matter what. And sometimes, that kind of companionship is all we need to get through a tough day.
Here are some of the ways that dogs have been shown to provide joy and comfort:
Dogs Can Help to Ease Anxiety and Depression
Studies show that dogs can reduce depression and anxiety too. They do this by encouraging us to exercise through playtime, easing loneliness, and providing companionship. Besides, dog owners tend to have lower blood pressure, hence, are less likely to suffer from heart disease.
Dogs Can Be Therapeutic
Have you heard of Pet Therapy? It’s a type of therapy that uses trained animals (commonly dogs) to help people recover from depression, anxiety, and even PTSD. Pet therapy is particularly helpful for mentally and physically challenged people.
Through pet therapy, the subject can develop a special bond with the animal, which in turn can provide several benefits such as:
- Increased social interactions
- Reduced boredom
- Improved mood
- Improved general well-being
- Increased activity and movements by playing with or walking the animals
- Decreased loneliness
Dogs Give Us Love
As King Frederick of Prussia said, “the only best friend that a man has, in this selfish world, one that’ll not betray or deny him, is his Dog.” And this couldn’t be more true. Dogs provide us with companionship, love, and loyalty that is unmatched by any other species.
A simple gesture like wagging their tail or licking our faces can fill us with happiness and make our worries disappear, even if just for a moment.
Have you ever been greeted by your dog after a long day of work and felt an instant sense of calm? That’s because dogs have a way of sensing our emotions, and they show their love for us in the best way they know.
Truly, dogs remind us that we are loved, no matter what.
Dogs Improve Our Social Life
Need someone to help you break the ice at a party? Dogs are great icebreakers! People love talking about their dogs (or any animal, really), and it’s a great way to strike up a conversation with someone new.
Dogs can also help us meet new people and make new friends. Think about it – how often have you stopped to talk to someone because they were walking their dog? Dogs can be a subject of common interest that can help us build relationships with others.
And let’s not forget about all the meetups, walks, and events specifically designed for dog owners and their furry friends. These are great opportunities to socialize and connect with other dog lovers in your area.
Final Thoughts on the Stress-Reducing Power of Dogs
Dogs really are man’s best friend. They provide us with love, companionship, and comfort that is unmatched by any other species or even any other person. So, if you’re feeling down, spend some time with your furry friend. They just might be the pick-me-up you need.
P.S. If you don’t have a dog of your own, consider volunteering at a local animal shelter. There are plenty of dogs there who would love some attention and affection from you!
Some of My Favorite Products For Dog Owners
I hope this article has helped you just a bit in everyday life as a dog owner. Being a dog owner for more than 25 years myself, I’ve tried an abundance of different products with varying success, but these products below are some that I can highly recommend to every dog and their owner without hesitation!
These links are affiliate links, so if you do end up using the links, I will earn a commission. But it’s products that I use daily myself, and I have nothing but praise for.
Dog Food: Every dog needs to eat correctly, and finding the best food for your dog can be hard, as the market is absolutely flooded with products. But since 2015 when the company was founded, I’ve been using Ollie Petfood. With their product being tailor-made to suit every dog’s specific needs, and as my dogs absolutely love the product, I’m pretty sure I’ve found a product I will continue to use for many years more. If you use my link you can get 50% off your first order.
Dog Training: If you’ve ever owned a puppy, you know that they require a lot of training to grow into a well-behaved adult. Brain Training for Dogs has helped me immensely with the mental training part of raising a dog, and it’s something I strongly recommend you consider.
Grooming: If you have a dog in your home, you’re going to need a brush, and for this, I recommend a Hertzko Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush. For that price, you simply can’t beat this brush for everyday grooming.
If you’re looking for the most up-to-date recommendations, check out my recommended products section that I’ve created to help every dog owner!