4 ways being a dog owner will improve your health

When you've had a bad day there is always one thing that you can rely on. Your furry friend will be at the door to greet you and is more than willing to give you all the hugs and kisses you need to forget everything that's happened that day. Your dog has unconditional love for you so whether you're feeling sad or happy, you can count on him to show it.

This is just one of the reasons why so many people have decided to adopt a best friend but there are so many other benefits of having one by your side. Dogs are good for your health for a variety of reasons!

Dogs Keep Us Active

Although you'd like to sit back, relax and watch your favorite show on TV, your dog has other ideas in mind. He's ready to play and wants you to join him. It's hard to say no when your dog is looking up with you with his sad eyes and making a silent plea to play. Once you do start moving you'll enjoy it and will try to keep up with his energy.

We all know that physical exercise is an important part of health so play and walks with your dog will help you as well as him. Your friend will keep you active in all weather conditions and you can never find an excuse good enough to not take him for his daily walk. He's like an accountable exercise trainer that gets you up and moving even when you really don't want to.

Good for Your Soul

Countless research has gone into proving the link between your mental state and your physical health. In fact, dogs are being used in nursing homes and other facilities around the country to help people feel better. When you're sad and lonely you’ll probably also have a lot of attention on your health issues. When a dog walks up to you and wants a pat on the head, however, your attention will be diverted and you'll feel a soft warm glow inside your heart. When you feel better mentally, it can radiate to your body.

Dogs also provide a great social reason to get out and meet your neighbors or other dog owners at a dog park. Thousands of owners have met their future spouses this way and there are even matchmaking sites on the Internet for dog owners only. After all, if you're a dog lover you’ll want to be hooked up with a spouse that loves them just as much as you do. Yes, chicken soup is not only good for your soul; dogs are too!

Lower Your Blood Pressure

When you're feeling a lot of mental stress, turn to your dog. Research from the American Heart Association has found that high blood pressure caused by stress can be lowered when you're getting support from your dog. While it may not take you off your high pressure medication completely, the dog snuggles you receive will make you feel better. Dogs may also help prevent high blood pressure from starting in people that are at high risk, but we’ll have to wait for the studies to prove it. For now, enjoy the hugs you get from your friend and enjoy knowing that he's working his way into your heart in more ways than one.

Reduce the Risk of Heart Disease

There have been many studies by the American Heart Association showing that people owning dogs have better cholesterol profiles and have more chance of surviving a heart attack. It's not time to run out and buy a dog simply to get your heart in shape though! A cardiologist and medical professor at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Lee, points out that healthier people that are making positive lifestyle decisions to reduce the risk of a heart attack are the individuals that are most likely to own a dog. You’ll have to be the final judge of that one! Either way, having a dog is good news any way you want to look at it!

Dogs give so much to us and it's hard to repay them for everything they do. Now that we know that they keep us healthier, how can we ever pay them back? Dogs are the animals that keeps on giving and whether were having a bad day or a good one, they'll always be there to accept us as we are. Feel happy, feel good and own a dog!

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