Benefits of having a pet

I cannot imagine not having a pet or to be specific a cat or a dog!

Ever since I was in my early teens, we had a pet. Starting with a beagle, when he passed away, we adopted a rescue who lived up until a week after my wedding day - I was heart broken of course but she had lived a long happy life. She also had a companion named Shimba a tortoise kitten I had gotten from a friend. She is 20 today! Our home at some point had a dog and three cats, two birds and a gold fish.

When I married and moved down to L.A. for a while we didn't have any pets, and the house felt empty, but with a bit of convincing, a new kitten soon filled that void. A baby followed and six years later we introduced our malty-poo to the family. She is very sweet and active, and loves playing with our tabby.

Pets bring great joy and most importantly they help maintain a good health. The physical and mental health benefits deriving from caring for a pet are numerous. Walking your dog daily sure is good for you as well as the dog. The simple act of holding and cuddling a furry friend, can help lower high blood pressure, calm you down and quickly reduce your stress levels, and studies back this up. Those who own pets have lower risk of heart disease. Pet owners are happier, more relax, and less likely to suffer from depression or anxiety issues.

Caring for a pet lifts your spirit as it makes you feel needed. There is no love like the unconditional love from your beloved pet. Dogs especially don't hold back. After a hard day's work, coming home to an excited dog waiting to greet you at the door is sometimes all you need to relieve the stress.

Benefits of owning a pet:

1. Stress reliever
2. Exercise stimulant
3. Lowers high blood pressure
4. Lower risk of heart disease
5. Elevates levels of serotonin and dopamine
6. Chases anxiety away
7. Brings more socializing
8. Older pet owners get sick less often
9. Helps maintain cholesterol levels
10. Provides companionship 

Some people go that extra step and foster pets, I know a guy who has been a foster parent to at least ten dogs. All which eventually found homes. Now that is great! We always looked to rescue pets, but with rescues also come issues. Our malty-poo is a sweetheart, but she has developed a couple of bad habits that we are presently trying to correct - because when you love your pet, you must seek help and fix the problem, so everyone in the family is happy.

I have bought a new book and I will keep you posted on the benefits of good training. My personal issue with my 1 and a half year old malty-poo is that she is uncomfortable around kids ages 2 to 7. While she is great with all the kids in the family, outsiders don't see that side of her. And with this comes the final benefit of learning responsibility. :)

I am looking forward to seeing the results and sharing with you.

Until then, stretch into a doggy posture, meditate ten minutes and, Namaste...

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