Deciding to own a pet can take a lot of thought and planning. My German Shepherd, Theo is a high energy active dog who enjoys exercising and daily walks in the park. Theo has pushed me to get out of the house for daily walks in the park. After a long day of work, these walks help relieve stress, take in the beautiful neighborhoods’ surroundings and maintain a healthy weight. The National Institute of Health (NIH) found that our pets can help improve heart health, relieve distressed hospitalized patients coping with pain and life-threatening illness and reduce risk of obesity and depression. Another NIH study found that people who owned pets had lower heart rates and blood pressures at rest or when undergoing stressful tests than those without a pet. Most definitely, Theo has pushed me to get more exercise and socialize with the neighbors who all know him by name but not mine. On the other hand, owning a pet at times can get expensive because of vet doctor bills, shots, grooming and boarding. Ways to cut down the costs include: use vet clinics (SPCA), consider purchasing pet insurance, buy pet food in bulk and when going out of town get a friend or family member to check on your pet(s).

Overall, the physical and mental health benefits of the human-animal bond make owning a pet a great investment. Go to tovacares.blogsite.com to read the full article: Can Pets help keep you Healthy: Exploring the Human-Animal Bond.

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