Dog owners feel younger
A group of researchers in Scotland have found out that the owners of dogs feel much younger than people of the same age, but who do not have a pet; they feel healthier and experience depression much more rarely.
Scientists from the University of Saint Andrews carried a number of studies showing that owners of dogs usually have a pretty good level of physical activity. Their health is almost the same as for people younger by 10 years. And, by the way, the distance traveled by the owner while walking with the pet does not affect this value.
Among the people, who took part in the experiment, here were up to 547 elderly people of age more than 65. The participants lived with a distance of 100 km from each other. 50 participants of this study owned dogs. The people taking part in the study kept wearing an accelerometer measuring and recording their level of physical activity for one week.
As the findings of the study showed, the owners of dogs appeared to have significantly increased agility rate, while the level of nervousness and melancholy was several times lower in comparison to the other participants.
According to the researchers, dog owners have to move regularly, constantly walk in the fresh air and do not pay attention even to the worst weather. Also, they do not feel alone and unconsciously believe that with their dogs they are secure.
If you have a dog, you need to walk it several times every day, so the most dog owners move a lot and spend more time outdoors.
Frequent active walks with four-legged friends in the fresh air help to normalize blood pressure, lower the levels of bad cholesterol, helping to keep it normal. Also, members of a family, where there is a dog, rarely suffer from various allergies; they are less susceptible to infections and respiratory diseases. If you are allergic to pets, it is most likely that you should blame cats, but not dogs. According to scientists, allergic reactions to cats are found about 2 times more likely for cats rather than for dogs.
In addition, scientists have come to the conclusion that a great incentive for people to walk their pets is not the awareness of health benefits, but the chance to meet someone familiar while walking.
Experts from Western Australia, led by Dr. Deborah Wales, conducted a series of experiments and confirmed the findings of their Scottish colleagues. Scientists believe that dogs help their owners to be active, and this is the key to a long life.