7 Reasons to Own a Pet

Story by Lyda Kay Ferree, The Southern Lifestyles Lady. Photography by Paris Parkins.

 Dr. Nick & Kayla Arcuri with Shadow & Rudy

Dr. Nick & Kayla Arcuri with Shadow & Rudy

Pets require attention and dedication, but those are small prices to pay for the physical and mental benefits they bring into our lives. If you are debating whether to get a pet, the following reasons on why you should have pets will likely have you searching for your next furry (or not furry) addition to your home.

1. Pets Reduce Stress
It has become very apparent that stress affects our mental and physical health. Sadly, our world has become more stressful than ever. We live in a fast-paced world that demands our attention and can easily wear us out. There are various ways to reduce stress in our lives, but one of the best is to own a pet. They provide support like a best friend because they are always available to listen (without judgment), which can help you unload after a hectic day.

2. Pets Provide Constant & Loving Companionship
People are not always around when you need them, but pets are. They are constantly giving love and gratitude, and they are happy to be in your presence. You can be yourself around pets. Constant companionship with a loving being has been shown to boost your immune system, improve heart health, reduce physical pain and improve mental health.

3. Pets Provide Entertainment
Pets are a great source of entertainment. They have personalities that can keep you laughing for hours. Dogs, cats and birds are probably most known for having distinct personalities.

4. Pets Give you Something To Be Responsible For
No matter what type of pet you get, it will require you to take care of it. Being responsible for another living being can help you be more responsible in the rest of your life too. This is especially true for kids who are learning the value of routine and good habits. However, adults may benefit from the consistent responsibility as well.

5. Pets Teach You To Be More Compassionate
“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive,” said Dalai Lama. We need more compassion in our lives, both self-compassion and compassion toward others. Owning a pet that depends on you for survival, good health and happiness can definitely cause you to become a more compassionate person.

6. Pets Increase Your Ability To Read Nonverbal Communication
A pet cannot speak, so you have to be able to read their cues and body language. You will be amazed at how this ability can transfer into your daily life with other people.

7. Pets Can Sense Danger
We all know that dogs will bark when they sense someone near the house, and that can be very good for home security. However, pets can sense far more than just a stranger. There are many true heartwarming stories about pets saving people from fires and other dangers. A pet just may save your life!