Do Dog Owners Live Longer?

Happy young family sitting on sofa holding a dog

Do pet owners live longer lives? Studies are showing that dog owners may in fact live longer lives. However, those same studies are beginning to show that dog owners may also live healthier and happier lives as well.

There are many benefits to owning a dog. Dogs are non-judgmental, providing their humans with unconditional love. They also give their humans the opportunity to give unconditional love in return.

Uncertain as to whether or not you want to be a dog owner? Here are some reasons why owning a dog can be wise choice indeed:

Getting Zen with Your Pets

Did you know that hanging out with your dog can offer you stress relief? Taking a walk, throwing a ball, even the simple act of brushing your dog can relax you.

When you feel stressed, your body reacts by producing and releasing hormones known as cortisol and adrenaline. The effects on your body may include rapid heart rate, tensing of muscles, and an increase in blood pressure. Interacting with your pet can actually reduce the effects of stress on the human body.

Not only does the human body receive benefits from interacting with a pet, so does the human mind. When there is a decrease in these stress-releasing hormones, the body is in a state of relaxation. If the body is relaxed, then so is the mind. In reverse, if the mind is relaxed, then so too is the body.

Keeping Fit

People who are dog owners tend to be more active. Dogs need walking and exercise just as their human owners do. Walking with your dog offers the benefit of keeping fit in many ways. Walking releases stress, eases the mind, provides physical fitness, and offers an opportunity to socialize with neighbors and other dog walkers.

Socialization

Dog owners have more of an opportunity to socialize compared to those who do not own pets. Have you ever gone to the park and noticed how many people stop to talk to a dog owner? Dogs offer many opportunities to meet and greet new people. Walking in parks, attending dog shows, or going to a local dog park are all wonderful ways to meet new people.

Alleviating Loneliness

Another great benefit of dog ownership is that they can and do alleviate loneliness. Seniors and parents who’s children have gone off to college or leave the nest often reap the most rewards of owning a dog. Loneliness can be a terrible experience and a pet provides company. If you own a pet, chances are that loneliness will decrease and happiness will increase.