Why pet is a huge depression solver?

To my cat P who I miss the most.

We are animals, animals of some kind. What attracts us the most is the one who can cure us. The ones who can love us, care for us, and share all the same feels like us.

I have always had a pet. A dog, cat, or plants. My mother has always taught me that having a pet is a cure that one other living creature can give you. And I never realized it until I had a pet of my own.

It was in June 2020 when my sister got this stray cat, a white lean cat that was getting chased by a few dogs. He was the most adorable cat that I have come across in my life. Like I mentioned before I always had some kind of pet in my house. At one point in the time, I had 3 cats, 7 kittens, and a dog. My father was not a huge fan of having a pet around. But when we got a stray dog home, he couldn't stop himself from petting him, feeding and training him.

So what is it about pets that help us, humans? According to NAMI, there are over 40 million adults who suffer from depression every day. And one of the best ways to get these people out of it is when they have been told to have a pet or when they are introduced to therapy dogs and cats. Studies show that dogs reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, ease loneliness, encourage exercise and improve your all-around health. For example, people with dogs have lower blood pressure and are less likely to develop heart disease — just playing with dogs has been shown to elevate oxytocin and dopamine, creating positive feelings and bonding for both the person and their pet.

My cats P, Ro, Angle, and Blue

Here are some of the benefits of having a pet;

  1. Exercise: Having a pet is like having a living being who is trying to understand you every minute. Especially dogs, with having a dog home who has been waiting to see you all day is like waiting for Christmas. Personally speaking when my sister got our dog home one of our major concerns was who will wake him every day for his business? Initially, my sister had all the enthusiasm in the world to walk him, later she started to become lazy. That's when I and my dad took turns to walk our dog. Getting up in the morning or talking him out in the evening after work was a little work at the start but later we started seeing the change in us. I was getting out of the house every now and then, used to getting fresh air, and importantly had a good non-gym workout.
  2. Socialize: The more I took him out on walks I realized I had a lot of my neighbors from different blocks too had dogs and they were all of my dog's age and they all loved playing in the dog park. This helped me more during the pandemic because I hardly went out and spoke to people. I started understanding that there a different levels of pet grooming and the kind of food we give. And some of these people became true friends of my circle.
  3. Gives you serotonin and dopamine: I know there are million other ways to get dopamine. But pets have proven to be the topmost serotonin and dopamine-releasing living creature that not just helps you laugh and make you happy but a major help for people like me who have had depression in their past.

My Cat was everything that made me get out of depression. Unfrountaly I lost him a few months back. Happiness does not have to come with a cost. But it can definitely come with fur and that big wide eyes. An Idea of having a pet can be one of the steps that you can take to help yourself. It does not always have to be a dog or cat. I have known people who have had, ducks, hens, fish, and even a plant as their pets. Something that they can turn to during the times they have felt down.

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