|Basic InformationLatest News|Get Ready, Safely, for the Great American EclipseTV Binge-Watching May Leave You Like 'The Walking Dead'Health Tip: Plan for a Heat WaveGivers Really Are Happier Than TakersHealth Tip: Think Smart During a Hot SpellHow Safe and Effective Is Your Sunscreen?For Drivers, Hands-free Can Still Be a HandfulIt's Never Too Soon to Safeguard Your BonesImpact of Video Games on Brain Varies With Game Type, Strategy'Loneliness Epidemic' Called a Major Public Health ThreatDoes Less Sleep Make You Less Healthy?Need to Calm Down? Try Talking to YourselfJust Thinking You're Less Active May Shorten Your LifeHealth Tip: Protect Your Skin at WorkGolfing and Gardening Your Way to FitnessTeaching an Old Brain New TricksCan't Get to the Gym? Work Out in Your Office!The Scoop on Avoiding 'Brain Freeze'How Much Sleep Do You Really Need?Healthy Heart in 20s, Better Brain in 40s?Health Tip: Getting Too Much Sun?Sunscreen Application Doesn't Provide Complete Body CoverHealth Tip: Protect Your Eyes During SummerHealth Tip: Check the Water Before SwimmingFlip-flops: Fun in the Sun, but Tough on FeetSound Sleep May Help You Junk the Junk FoodWhen Opinions Threaten FriendshipsBetter Diet, Longer Life?Health Tip: If Lifestyle Interferes With SleepDocs Should Counsel Even Healthy People on Diet, Exercise, Experts SayDaily Jolt of Java May Bring Longer LifeHealth Tip: When Air Quality is PoorKeep Your Summer Cookouts SafeMany Parts of the World Lack Soap for Hand-WashingHealth Tip: Yoga Before BedGetting Over GuiltHealth Tip: When Summer Heat Gets IntenseDon't Let Summer Strain Your BackFor Many, Friends Are Key to Happiness in Old AgeCould a High IQ Mean a Longer Life?Presence of Smartphone Cuts Available Cognitive CapacityProtect Your Skin From the Summer SunHealth Tip: Create a Food-and-Activity JournalHow to Dodge Summertime ThreatsHealth Tip: Basic Beach SafetyWallpaper May Breed Toxins: StudyHealth Tip: Are You Well Enough to Travel?Can Smartphone Use Bring on Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?Health Tip: Want Healthier Lungs?Tips to Curb Nighttime EatingLinksBook Reviews
Fido or Fluffy Can Bring You a Big Health Boost
by By Joan McClusky
Updated: May 16th 2017
TUESDAY, May 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Millions of Americans love their pets and spend lots of money to keep them happy and healthy. But being a pet owner also has a lot of benefits for the human half of the relationship.
According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, there are the physical boosts, like lower blood pressure, lower heart rate and lower cholesterol.
Being with your pet also reduces your response to stress and helps you to recover from it faster. Having a pet benefits kids in many ways, including helping them develop empathy. A pet can give you the same emotional connection as a human friend. And studies show that the more people benefit from their pets, they closer they tend to be to other people.
Dog owners of all ages are more likely to be physically active and less likely to be obese. For older people, having a dog can keep them socially connected. And that's been shown to help people live longer, and avoid physical and mental decline. Some dogs have special training to safeguard your health, like warning you before a seizure.
So how do you choose the right dog for your family? Start by thinking about your living space, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals suggests. Do you live in a house or a small apartment? Do you have a yard or live close to a dog park?
Next, think about your lifestyle. If you spend a lot of time indoors, you might want a dog that also enjoys being inside with people, like a Pug. If you're looking for an exercise companion or your family loves outdoor activities, a dog that loves being outside, like a Retriever, may be a good choice.
Think also about who'll be caring for your dog. Is that person up for long walks every day or will your dog be getting most of its exercise in your backyard? If you've got kids, make sure any dog you're considering loves having kids touch and play with him or her. Also talk about kids' role in caring for the new family member. Having a pet is a great way to instill a sense of responsibility.
For more tips on choosing a pet, visit the ASPCA.
This article: Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved.