Having a dog is not only great for snoozy cuddles, making friends at the park and pimping out your Instagram account, it can reduce the risk of heart disease too.
This is according to a Swedish study. Basically, 3.4 million people between the ages of 40 and 80 found that having a dog was associated with a 23% reduction in death from heart disease and a 20% lower risk of dying from any cause over the 12 years of the study.
Studies also show that dogs relieve social isolation and depression. Both of these things are linked to an increased risk of heart disease and early death, showing the impact the presence of a dog can make.
The reason dogs can have such a profound effect on their owner’s health is quite simple. Owning a dog means exercising it, which means a higher level of physical activity. This results in dog owners being able to respond to stress better as their blood pressure and pulse rates don’t soar. Another reason is that dogs provide social support, helping to make life more meaningful for those that would otherwise be isolated. For those who live alone, this is hugely impacting.
There you have it, yet another reason to love fluffy canines.