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Top Reasons To Adopt A Pet And See Your Family's Health Improve Overnight

Updated on June 11, 2011

Dogs Are Part Of The Family

Family Dog Training Center ... "Photo Courtesy of U.S. Army"
Family Dog Training Center ... "Photo Courtesy of U.S. Army"
A little boy prays by his bedside and his dog accompanies him
A little boy prays by his bedside and his dog accompanies him

How To Manage Your Family's Health

Managing Your Family's Health can be daunting particularly during certain seasons such as the monsoon. Children and adults are susceptible to various diseases and infections during our life span due to various factors. Be it heredity or a sudden illness, all members of the family get affected by the general mood in the house. Sure, modern science has given us answers to the management of several illnesses, but health care at home goes beyond just prescription drugs and needs the emotional support of the family. Did you know that a simple solution such as having a pet at home can help you in effective health management. Pets can be all sorts-birds, cats, dogs, bearded dragon, mice,you name it, you can own it,as long as it is legal to adopt it. Yes, no endangered species such as turtles at home.

How To Choose The Right Pet For Your Family

As mentioned earlier, you can have a variety to choose from-too bad you can't be Noah to fill up your Ark. But, you need to care for your pet as well so, it is important for you to know how much space at home you have for your pet,how much time you can devote to its upkeep(varies according to what you choose),how much money you can set aside every month for its upkeep(and that includes visits to the vet). Some prefer a rabbit or fish aquarium. If any family member is averse to certain animal, you can go for one that all are comfortable with. But it is advisable to give them time to adjust to a pet,which by the way will help them overcome their fear of a certain spaces, such as a dog. Adopting a puppy will be harmless and as it grows, the family begins to love and care for it, making it easier for the one person who hated or was scared of dogs to look forward to interacting with him everyday.Time sure is a great healer.

Our Family Pet,JERRY at my feet soon after I returned home after surgery.
Our Family Pet,JERRY at my feet soon after I returned home after surgery.

How Jerry Helps Manage My Family's Health

My husband and daughter, both were extremely scared of dogs until 5 years ago, when we adopted a stray pup which we found outside our gate as we alighted from our car after visiting another stray dog named Brownie, at the CUPA vet hospital. Having lost my fatherinlaw a couple of days earlier, we decided to send the pup up for adoption, but at the CUPA (Compassion Unlimited Plus Action), when he was being bathed, my husband and daughter both decided to bring him back home after being given the necessary injections. They fell in love with the puppy. Named Jerry, he altered our lifestyle a little bit, but it was a welcome change. My husband who was a BP patient,needed to go for a walk everyday,but came up with excuses always, as he was not confident of walking by himself. Jerry gave him cause to "have-to walk"' each morning. And my daughter who had always wanted to adopt a dog but was scared of them, began to love and coo in his ear when she was not studying. He kept her silent company while preparing for exams and when she was alone at home. My husband's BP was under control and he regained his confidence to walk by himself again. He went so far as to play a couple of games of badminton everyday after his morning walk. His health improved and he lost the extra kilos he had been piling. As for me, I had always loved dogs and made friends with strays outside our home, and friends' pet dogs. But never had the pleasure of giving life to a puppy in our own home and watch him grow even though he turned out to be naughty and short tempered. He gives me the companionship when I am alone at home and the evening walks are mine. Unwanted strangers are barked at and gives us a sense of security. Of course, Jerry sits on his mat on the floor a couple of feet from me as I type this hub. And did I mention, he goes with us when we travel, by car. He loves car rides and loves to occupy the passenger seat next to my daughter or husband as they drive. I have to take the back seat. Overall, our health has improved because of the increased physical activity that is imperative and we have made friends with several dog lovers and pet owners in our neighborhood, and have influenced many others to adopt puppies as well. We didn't do any talking, they just saw a change in our healthy lifestyle.

Health Benefits Of Adopting A Pet

Pets bought or adopted, pedigree or stray have the capacity to love unconditionally.  Man being an emotional being responds positively to love, whether from another human being or an animal. Pets make excellent companions and continue to love you and watch over you whatever your condition or status. They recognize babies, children and the elderly and adapt easily to situations and people.

Boost Immunity :

Furred animals such as dogs and cats were earlier thought to cause allergic reactions, particularly asthma. But recent studies conducted on babies at birth and a year later showed that those that were exposed to pet dogs at home were less likely to have allergies or asthma. And in fact, they had a stronger immune system in place.

Conversation Starter :

Walking your dog in the neighborhood or parks or driving him around in the family car almost always makes heads turn and is the start of a conversation. All pet lovers and owners simply love talking about their dog or cat. A dog or any pet is the start of many a conversation. Which means you become a more sociable person.

Companions For The Elderly :

Senior citizens often lack company and suffer from aches and pains sometimes due to inactivity. Having a pet around, makes them less depressed and they begin to talk to the pet, care for it and without realizing begin to perform simple tasks which provides diversion and exercise. Some prefer a cat to a dog as they require less care on the part of the elderly.

People With Health Conditions : Doctors often recommend medication, diet and exercise in order to control health conditions such as high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease and blood pressure. But it is seen that owning a pet automatically helps you make the necessary lifestyle changes to become healthier. And enjoy life.

  1. Male pet owners are known to have lesser risk of heart disease, lower triglyceride and cholesterol. Those who have had heart attacks survive longer if a pet is adopted.
  2. Playing with a pet for about 15-20 minutes particularly a dog, can elevate one's mood and serves to reduce anxiety, because it elevates the level of serotonin and dopamine. These are nerve transmitters that are pleasurable and have a calming effect.
  3. People who are sick from illness often find having pets around eases their pain and suffering. And that includes cancer patients and arthritis patients.
  4. It is common knowledge that the visually impaired find specially trained dogs extremely useful while attending to their everyday duties.
  5. Children with autism are known to respond positively to dogs,horses and dolphins.
  6. Those with high blood pressure are known to become calmer when caring for a pet.
  7. Those who tend to ignore social obligations, become more sociable.
  8. People who come home from work find that that their pet dog is a perfect stress buster.
  9. Pet dogs are known to protect their masters and their families from danger and in case of certain danger are ready to take the plunge to save the master or his child. The examples being finding a lost child,accompanying you in the woods, on a biking trail, or jumping into a raging river to save you or even fighting with armed robbers and other dogs to safeguard your child and lastly, they even will jump into a burning home to fetch the family members.
  10. Knowing you are loved so immensely itself makes you feel a deep attachment for your pet. And you care for him/her. Pets indeed become your family. For they are the perfect way to manage your family's health.

 Physical Fitness improves as you walk the dog every morning and evening for about 30 minutes which fulfills your daily requirement as well.

Having a pet for companionship helps fight depression particularly after the loss of a loved one.

Animal Assisted Therapies work wonders for the elderly and those who have suffered stroke or suffer from illnesses such as Parkinson's. Visits from dogs trained for such therapy are a boon to patients,who respond quickly to these natural mood enhancers, and look forward to such meetings on a regular basis.

How To Choose A Pet For Your Family

How To Travel With Your Pet And Check Into Hotels That Accept Pets As Guests

What Pet Do You Have ?

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    • Paulart profile image


      7 years ago from 2510 Warren Avenue Cheyenne,Wyoming 82001

      Good information on this hub. I am really glad to read this hub.

    • Purple Perl profile imageAUTHOR

      Esther Shamsunder 

      9 years ago from Bangalore,India


      Children adore pets.Your child is lucky to have a rabbit for a pet. Gives your child the opportunity to care , cuddle and love, which is calming and relaxing for the heart. Nurturing a pet rabbit and looking forward to play with it, your child's overall health improves significantly.

      Recommended Reading:

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      i have got a rabbit and my child has a heart condition and i was wondering if this was ok !!

      if you can send me advice or opinions thanks x

    • Purple Perl profile imageAUTHOR

      Esther Shamsunder 

      9 years ago from Bangalore,India

      You are very welcome,K9!

    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 

      9 years ago from Northern, California

      What a great hub! The healing powers of our friend the dog are many. As you state, lower blood pressure, higher social enteration, and a general state of well being. I really enjoyed this hub and will recommend it to friends and family! Thank you for suggesting I read it.



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