Money Matters Team

Mental health and pets go hand in paw

By Money Matters Team 15/09/2021

Mental health and pets go hand in paw

Mental health and pets go hand in paw

There’s no arguing that pets can have a positive impact on your wellbeing. Mental health and pets are regularly linked as your furry friends offer companionship when you need it most. Here are just some benefits of having a pet.

A sense of purpose

Firstly, pets require a routine. Everyday tasks such as feeding time or walks offer those struggling with mental health a sense of purpose. Without you to take care of them, a pet would not be able to survive. This responsibility of care can be as rewarding as it is challenging.

Social contact

With around half of the UK’s households owning a pet, it’s likely that you and a stranger have something in common. As a nation of dog lovers, the daily walk can be a chance for you to chat with others. This is important if you’re lonely. Socialising is vital when it comes to maintaining good mental health.

Pets are comforting

Just the presence of a pet can have a calming effect on you. And pets make loyal and loving allies. If you’re less outgoing you’re very likely to benefit from owning a pet.

It’s been proven that simply having a pet close by can combat stress and anxiety[1]. This strengthens the link between good mental health and pets.

The companionship offered by pets also combats loneliness. Feelings of isolation and loneliness can consequently trigger symptoms of depression. This can be prevented by pet ownership – loneliness can be alleviated with a four-legged companion.

The immune system

Children who grow up in homes with pets are also less likely[2] to develop common allergies. Allergies can, as a result, cause people to become lethargic and suffer from insomnia. These health issues can make people more vulnerable to mental health issues, such as depression.

They make you smile

Finally, if your pet does something cute or funny, the natural reaction is to smile. Smiling results in your serotonin and dopamine levels increasing. These are directly linked to feelings of calmness and happiness.

Social contact

With around half of the UK’s households owning a pet, it’s likely that you and a stranger have something in common. As a nation of dog lovers, the daily walk can be a chance for you to chat with others. This is important if you’re lonely. Socialising is vital when it comes to maintaining good mental health.










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