Did you know that owning a pet could be good for your heart – literally? A scientific study followed 2,805 people and compared the health of pet owners versus non-pet owners. Pet owners were less likely to need blood pressure medication. Among the women, pet ownership meant better ability to breathe (higher peak expiratory flow volume). The women with pets were also admitted to the hospital less often, 28% less often, compared to the women who did not own pets. The positive health effects seen may stem from a combination of the psychological benefits of having a pet plus the fact that people with pets are more likely to take walks or play around the house. Loving a pet not only feels good; it may make you a healthier person.
Source: Wells Y, Rodi H. Effects of pet ownership on the health and well-being of older people. Australasian Journal of Ageing, 2000; 19(3): 143-148.