There are many positive reasons to getting a dog. Spending time with a canine companion has benefits for your wellbeing and general health. Whether you’re looking to adopt, want to give your children some responsibility, or are looking for some four-legged companionship, we look at the reasons to get a dog, outside the cuteness and adorable aspect.
They provide unconditional love
It is said that a dog is a man’s best friend because a dog will always stand by your side and be that someone to talk to. You’ll be welcomed back like a long lost friend, whether you’ve been gone two minutes or three hours. At the end of a long day, a dog will snuggle up on the couch with you and provide emotional support. It’s also believed that owning a dog can also help ease the feeling of loneliness and improve someone’s self-esteem.
You’ll get out more
They will encourage you to exercise more, which is another great reason to get a dog. Dogs need walking and daily exercise so this will naturally get you moving more as you meet their needs, but also your own. The amount of exercise a dog needs will depend on its breed and age but generally you’re likely to be out for at least 30-60 minutes per walk. You’ll feel good from it and your dog will benefit from exploring the great outdoors and playing in an natural environment. The NHS recommends we spend at least 150 minutes a week on moderate exercise so this works alongside this notion perfectly. Moving more lifts our spirits and there is a happiness we can find in being around nature that we should always explore.
You’ll meet new people
Whether it be in the local park or a quick loop round the block, having a dog by your side helps you meet people. They are the conversation starter you don’t have to think about. What’s his name? How old is he/she? What’s he/she like? The questions are endless and you will find yourself asking away too as your pooches meet. Dog owners love to chat and learn about other dog owners, you’ll already share the same common ground – a love for pets, so these conversations will flow easily. After a few encounters you may even start walking together and become good friends along with your dogs.
They help teach responsibility
If it’s your children that are on the case with promises they will walk, feed, bath, cater for all needs if you give in, owning a dog can offer a great lesson in responsibility. If introducing a puppy, a child will learn from the start how to care and look after a puppy and should relish in the task and enjoy it. It’s important to research the best breeds for children before making the leap as children and puppies can take some time to learn acceptable behaviour towards each other. This is often the most challenging phase for any family but with boundaries and consistency, the friendships formed on the other side will make it worth it.
Dogs ease stress
Multiple studies conclude that dogs generally can help us feel less stressed out. Not only do they make us laugh, petting them can help ease our own worries and release serotonin and dopamine, which helps calm our mood. And looking into their adorable round black eyes can release happy chemical, Oxytocin. Owning a dog can also help lower blood pressure and lessen the time you spend in the doctor’s surgery, so the health benefits and reasons to getting a dog are hugely positive.
Of course timing is everything and your home and work life routines need to be right for that canine pal to fit into your life. But with a few tweaks and the commitment to your furry friend, they can really help enrich your life and wellbeing.