The Importance of Pets
Came across some articles about the importance of pets in people's lives! Want to share those with you.
Pets are part of our everyday lives and part of our families. They provide us with companionship but also with emotional support, reduce our stress levels, sense of loneliness and help us to increase our social activities and add to a child’s self-esteem and positive emotional development. In return, as responsible pet owners we need to ensure that our animals are kept healthy, fit, get nutritious food, love and affection and proper housing and care.
Pets help out in many societal ways as well, especially dogs. Their sense of smell and the fact they can be easily trained have led to dogs being used to help people in an extraordinarily diverse range of activities: therapy dogs are taken to nursing homes, hospitals, care centres for the disabled to engage with patients to help their quality of life by making them more sociable and encourage interaction and activities. Rescue dogs have been trained to take on a number of tasks in searching for survivors after natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, fires, avalanches, etc. They assist firemen and policemen in tracking people and they rescue thousands of people across the world every year. Medical alert and detection dogs help in detecting cancer, but also have been trained to help people with severe forms of Diabetes , Narcolepsy, Addison’s Disease, and Epilepsy to ensure they get medical attention when necessary. These dogs save people’s lives on a daily basis. And then there are the assistance dogs we see regularly when we are out and about: they are trained to help physically impaired people (the disabled, blind and deaf people) in their everyday needs and perform a number of tasks to facilitate people’s lives from opening and closing doors to helping people undress, to emptying washing machines.
More and more people have pets who share our homes and daily lives. Like us, our pets live longer as well. We need new and improved ways to care for them as our pets are living longer than in the past.
Pets in this day and age
The latest figures shows that 80 million European households have a pet. As this figure grows, so too does their role in people’s lives. Pets provide companionship, affection and protection and unique bonds are formed with owners.
In addition to being a source of love and friendship, there have been numerous scientific studies analysing the many ways in which pets are good for our health.
One of the more obvious health benefits of owning a pet is that of exercise - dog walking or playing with a cat is a great way for people to burn a few more calories. Other pets such as rabbits, birds and fish, all have their part to play.
Contact with animals can give confidence socially plus bring real physiological and psychological benefits: reducing stress, helping to prevent illness and allergies, lowering blood pressure, aiding recovery and boosting chances of survival after a life-threatening illness. In today's high-pressure society the presence of pets helps many humans cope with increasing stress and anxiety.
"In a study of 70 women, we found that pet ownership significantly reduced the self-consciousness of disfigurement, compared with those without a pet. It made them feel more in control of their illness during recovery and more hopeful for the future."
The study shows, she says, the value of unconditional support. "After surgery, many women feel nervous about asking for support, sometimes because they feel they must put on a brave face for their families.
"A cat could not care less what surgery you have had. It sits on your lap and purrs and is an incredible comfort. What patients want is the cuddle factor: they can stroke the pet with no one else around and howl their hearts out."
Source Christine Doyle: The Telegraph
How important is your pet in your life?
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