Does Owning A Pet Help Us To Live Longer?


A public health report published as early as 1980 indicated that pets helped heart attack victims survive the ordeal and live longer than their non-pet counterparts. Pets are commonplace in households and are treated as part of the family- the fact that pet owners invest a lot of money in pet care is a testimony to that.

Any sort of interaction with pets, whether it’s talking to them, petting them or playing with them appears to affect people positively- both emotionally and physically.

Pets, be it a dog, a cat or a parrot improve the quality of their owners’ lives, make them happier and give them something to look forward to every day.


1. Overall physical health

Giving credence to the fact that pets help people live longer, scientists believe that the human-animal bonding helps lower cortisol – the stress hormone – in pet owners. In addition, they were found to have lower blood pressure, lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels and were found to be in good physical shape.

This actually finds a definite place in the field of medicine, where animals or birds are trained to treat social, emotional and psychological problems of human beings. Dogs are also trained to assist the disabled to be independent. Children with dogs coped better while dealing with death or illness in the family.

2. Seniors benefit from pets

Studies show that neural activity in seniors was excited when they walked their dogs. It’s believed that interaction with pets stimulated the parasympathetic nervous system, which had a calming and restful influence on the elderly.

3. Detect and predict medical problems

A study showed that trained dogs could actually identify patients with bladder cancer by just smelling their urine. Certain dogs could predict when their owners were going to have an epileptic seizure and actually warn them beforehand.

Pets keep illnesses at bay, make people happier and hence help them live longer.

What do you think? Do you have a pet who helps you to feel better?