With everyone stuck at home, far from friends and sometimes even family, many people are beginning to feel the weight of isolation. Many countries are still under strict quarantine. Even those who are allowed some degree of freedom are still advised against staying out. This has resulted in an all-time high of reported cases of depression and anxiety. Humans are social creatures, and the fact that we cannot gather to meet each other because of the risk of the virus is getting to everyone.
An unlikely hero of this whole ordeal has sprung: our pets. Our furry friends do more than just wake us up in the morning to feed them. Studies have shown that they can actually increase your mood and decrease stress levels. Especially for those working at home, productivity is maintained, thanks to their presence. Overall, pets have been heaven-sent, but how are they exactly doing it? Below are ways pets can help you and reasons you should consider getting one if you still haven’t already.
Pets Are Emotionally Responsive
Many pet owners have long reported that their fur babies respond to their emotions. When they’re sad, their pets cuddle up to them as if comforting them. And during times like this, it’s easier to feel anxiety even if you’re just going out. Someone to comfort and show you that they’re with you can help. Cats and dogs are smart; they know when you’re communicating with them and what you’re feeling as you’re communicating. Pets make great listeners, too, even though they can’t exactly talk. They often respond to the inflections in your voice.
You Have Your Own Cuddle Buddy
With touching and other forms of physical contact now a high-risk act, many people have longed for the sensation of touch. After all, it’s a basic sensory requirement that humans have. We all need to feel, and having pets gives you that option. Hugging your dog can feel great, and they often like being hugged, too. While cats aren’t particularly sweet, they still show physical affection. It feels heartwarming when they do. The way our pets show physical affection can help reduce sadness as it releases a wide variety of chemicals in our brain, largely responsible for feeling happy.
Having a Pet Will Encourage You to Get Exercise
Dogs need walking. And cats, well, cats will work you out one way or another. The interesting thing about owning a pet is that it’s almost like an exercise. You have to walk your dog—and vets encourage walking your cat, too. There will be times when they’re so full of energy that they’re zooming around your property. When that happens, it’s best you’re moving with them. Playing with your pets can make you feel physically tired, but it’s the good kind of tired. Nowadays, it’s so easy to laze around, stay seated, or lie down the whole day. Having pets that will encourage you to move helps prevent a sedentary lifestyle.
They’re Just Fun to Be Around
Boredom is fast becoming a major enemy throughout this pandemic. It’s either you stay home and get used to boredom or risk yourself going outside. Luckily, having pets is one of the best things you can ever have. Any pet owner will tell you that there’s never a dull moment with their furry friend around. If you’ve ever owned one, you will know. Pets make every moment fun, whether it be through their hilarious shenanigans or their attempts at acting like us. They’re adorable when they do it, too, which often makes you wonder whether their jokes and pranks are all a ploy to make use give them more treats.
Consider Adopting Instead
If you still don’t have a pet and would like to have one, consider adopting instead. Going for a dog or a cat that needs a home is a good give-and-take decision, as you’re giving them shelter while they offer their companionship. Animals in need of shelter warm up to you pretty fast, too, as they’re eager to show love and be loved. Of course, you can opt to get your future cat or dog trained by a professional to make sure that they’re well-tempered.
Pets have long been part of human history. They’ve been part of hieroglyphs, oral and written history, and so much more. And as we’re living through a crucial moment in history, perhaps we need their help once again. If you currently have a pet, hug them tight and thank them. If you still don’t, maybe it’s time you got one, too.