If you’re searching for reasons to convince your family, or yourself, that a pet is a good idea, then look no further. Recent studies have shown that having a pet can result in many psychological benefits and actually improve your health! As a therapist in the Hermosa Beach, CA area, I strive to promote the physical and mental health of all of my clients. I have observed the profound psychological and physical benefits that pets bring to many of my clients’ lives, which is why I I often recommend considering getting a pet if you are looking for a unique way to bring positive changes into your life.
Whether your “man’s best friend” is a dog, cat, or any other non-human being that resides in your home, you are most likely already reaping the many benefits of having a pet. Psychologists at Miami University and St. Louis University argue that the emotional benefits gained through owning a pet can be equivalent to human friendship. Whether it’s a result of the unconditional love they provide, increased physical activity, or companionship, pets can improve many aspects of your life. Some of the many benefits include:
Having a pet typically means more activity. It can be as simple as a walk around the block with your pup or a few minutes of “try and catch this” with your cat. This increased activity not only befits your pet, but you as well. Studies have shown that individuals who own pets actually experience enhanced physical fitness, which I frequently see in my therapy practice in the Hermosa Beach, CA area.
Taking care of your pet can help take care of you as well. A nonhuman friend comes with a sense of responsibility to tend to your pets needs, which in turn can also benefit you physically and mentally. Fulfilling your pet’s needs and seeing their happiness can boost your happiness.
Being responsible for another living thing helps individuals learn how to balance and organize their priorities. In my pet friendly South Bay therapy practice, I frequently find that many of my clients who own pets, no matter the type, develop a routine in order to care for their nonhuman friend. Having a pet means that there is another living being who is relying on you to love and care for it; this requires time, effort, and being responsible for something beyond yourself!
Whether you’re at your lowest low, or just having a bad day, having a pet can bring a smile to your face. Studies have shown that having a pet can significantly reduce stress and anxiety. They provide company for those who are alone and they possess an amazing capacity to comfort you when you are feeling down.
As a result of all previously mentioned benefits, having a pet can greatly improve your physical health in addition to your mental health. The combination of increased exercise, increased happiness, and reduced stress can actually lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart problems.
Getting a pet is a big commitment, but it can alter your life in a significantly positive way. As a therapist in Hermosa Beach, CA, I frequently meet with clients whose pets have altered their lives in incredible ways. If you happen to be suffering from depression, loneliness, or anxiety, I recommend first taking care of yourself before committing to a pet. One way to do this is by seeking the support of a therapist. The next step may then be bringing a furry friend into your life! Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or schedule an appointment with me to start your South Bay therapy today!