Dr. Mark Newkirk, of Newkirk Family Veterinarians,  Discusses How Pets Can Improve Your Health

The benefits of owning a pet are rewarding because they are loyal and they add a sense of  companionship to our lives. Since these cheerful animals naturally make us happy, owning a pet can be a great asset to our overall health. Simply by interacting with our pets can help with lowering blood pressure, cholesterol, and even releasing the endorphins that cause us to relax and feel good.

Companionship is something everyone longs for and essentially something we all need. The phrase "a dog is a man's best friend" is true. Our pets become family, they are our friends. In fact, animals of all kinds- cats, dogs, hamsters, fish, rabbits, and even birds give us comfort. Bonding with our animals also can help to cut down on our levels of stress. Any dog owner will tell you that dogs are naturally in tune with understanding human emotions. Some how these sweet creatures know just how to empathize with us when we need it most.

Our pets keep us going. Having a pet may require us to take them outside for a walk. Going on frequent walks with our pets keeps us active and gives us the opportunity to get some fresh air throughout the day. Owning a pet can be a great source of exercise as well. Some people enjoy taking their dog with them for an early morning jog. Some may not realize that even walking with our pet is great for gradual weight loss, and improving our circulation especially if you're up in age.

Let's talk about how pets naturally make us release endorphins! Endorphins are also known as the brain's - feel good hormones because they trigger a positive feeling in the body. Our pets make us feel happy. It doesn't matter what happened during the day our pets love us just the same and can't wait to greet us when we come home. Interacting with our pet after a long stressful day can be an immediate pick me up in energy and attitude.

Lastly, pets are a big responsibility. Our warm and cuddly friends come at a cost. It is important to make sure our pets stay in good health and take trips to their veterinarian as needed. Be sure to discuss a health plan that best suits your pets needs as well. If you're considering purchasing a pet and have children at home it is best to take some time to think it through. There are many different factors to consider before purchasing your new best friend.


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