Rebecca Menard ’17, Student Life Editor
Many people around the world are pet owners, and if they are not, they are either allergic or have another reason why they cannot own one. Not only are pets cute, but they provide benefits to their owners and the people around them that one may not even realize . How many times have you seen a cute dog, and it immediately put a smile on your face? Or how many times have you walked into a pet store wishing you could have every animal there? Let’s take a look at how important animals are and all of the great things they do for people beyond being just cuties.
First of all, having a pet provides support on an emotional level. A study from animalplanet.com has shown that owning a pet can decrease depression, stress and anxiety and can even lower blood pressure. Part of this is due to the fact that when you are playing with a pet it increases certain chemicals in your brain like, serotonin and dopamine, that cause you to be happy, according to humana.com. Personally, when there are times where I am upset about something, my little Yorkie-poo, Bo, makes me feel much better. I can always depend on his cute face to make me happy or put me in a better mood. Senior Callie Harper has two cats, Martha and Carol, and she loves them unconditionally. “I look forward to coming home and seeing my cats everyday. They always make my day so much better after a long day at school,” Harper said.
Pets, most of the time, are a great deal of work for their owner. Owning a pet, especially a dog calls for a lot of attention, and it keeps their owners on their toes. Most dogs need walks daily and quite a bit of time to get taken out to the bathroom. All of this adds up to a large deal of activity that is beneficial to physical health. Research conducted from the National Institute of Health, found that dog owners responsible for walking their pups are less likely to be overweight than those who do not own a dog. Dog owner, senior Julia Dobry, takes her dog, Dylan, on hikes when it is nice out. “I go to Island Lake with my sisters, and we take Dylan. We find a lot of cool trails there and get some exercise,” she said.
Beside the physical and emotional benefits, dogs help with social life and can help people form connections with both animals and people. They teach empathy and how to love and care for something. Especially at a young age, children do not know much about these concepts and they can be learned while raising an animal.
With all of these great things about animals, how could you not want one around all the time? They bring so much positivity to those around them. Although they sometimes are messy and can be a lot of work, it is all worth it in the end. There is such a good feeling that comes along with a pet when you come home and get to see them. That cute face looking up at you when you walk in the door will remind you of how special animals are and everything they do for us.