The Tipping List
The Health Power of Pets
How holistic is your dog?
By: Mary Beth Sammons
Pets love us unconditionally. They’re also good for our family’s health, mentally and physically. While today’s pet parents are looking for more ways to keep their furry family members happy and healthy, research shows that owning a pet offers significant health benefits for the entire family, says Claudia Kawcyzska, executive editor of Bark magazine.
Pets are good for kids (and for their parents too). Caring for pets can boost self -esteem, lower heart rate and blood pressure, and help teach our kids the power of discipline. Consider this:
• Positive self-esteem is enhanced in children when they own a pet; they are more self-confident. (Source: Delta Society/Bergensen, 1989)
• Children who suffer from attention deficit disorder (ADD) are able to focus on a pet, which helps them learn how to concentrate. (Source: Love, Miracles and Animal Healing. Schoen, 1996)
• Kids who own pets have lower heart rates/blood pressure at physical exams. (Source: Ontario Veterinary Medical Association)
• Kids age 11 to 16 who have pets also have a greater ability to understand nonverbal communications. (Source: Ontario Veterinary Medical Association)