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Dogs Can Help Reduce Stress

It was National Puppy Day recently. Made up holiday? Of course, it was. Did I care? Heck, no. I think we all know pets make us happy, but the bonus is dogs can help reduce stress too. Read on for all the benefits of how owning a pet makes our lives happier and healthier. 

My dogs aren’t young anymore, but they bring my husband and and I incredibly joy. Each night, Daysun and I spend a few minutes looking at cute photos and short videos of animals on Reddit while our two dogs, Penny and Lucy, are curled up around us. It’s worth it to take a “paws” from politics occasionally and focus on our four-legged friends.

Dogs Can Help Reduce Stress

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What We Love About Our Dogs

dogs can help reduce stress

You can follow our cute dogs on Instagram – Penny and Lucy – @pennyloveslucy. We don’t have children so our dogs are the ones we show off photos of regularly and ooh and aah about how cute they are.

dog-bath

Whenever we’re sick they just want to comfort us and stay close. Actually, they just want to be next to or near us wherever we are in the house.

dogs help reduce stress

They have sweet routines, which we honor. If my husband and I are walking the dogs together, Lucy prefers me to hold her leash while at night she always rests her head on my husband’s chest for a pre-sleep snuggle.

Penny likes me to carry her up the stairs to our front door and for 16 years (yup, she’s that old) has slept next to me on the right side of the bed. Just like my most of us have sides of the bed we prefer, she does to.

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And they’re troopers when it comes to wearing a dog costume on Christmas and Halloween.

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Here’s a few tips from Erin Askeland, Training and Behavioral Expert at Camp Bow Wow on the benefits of how a furry family member can reduce the stress we experience every day.

Dogs Can Help Reduce Stress

Some studies show that people begin to feel less anxious after spending less than an hour with an animal. There are endless benefits from lowering your stress level and while the things that we find stressful in our lives are often hard to eliminate, adding an animal to your life can help.

  • General Benefits: There’s a reason that they say dog is man’s best friend. Having a pet, not limited to dogs, is something that everyone should experience at some point in their life. Pets can be calming, mood lifting, empathetic, and so much more. They teach you how to be selfless and responsible as you are caring over another life (for those of you without children).  Generally speaking, they make you happy. 
  • Helps with Depression: In some cases, therapists suggest that patients suffering from depression adopt a pet. An animal will love you unconditionally and be a great friend and listener. People with depression often benefit from having a pet, as the animal can help them get out of the house.
  • Health Benefits: There are other health benefits associated with pet ownership (particularly dogs). Many studies show that owning a pet has a positive impact on cardiovascular disease, hypertension, infection control, allergies, stress related problems, blood pressure, and psychological issues.
  • Engaged Mind: A key to a healthy mind, especially for those who are elderly, is staying engaged with others. A pet is often a conversation starter and being out with a pet often warrants questions or comments from passersby. Bringing your dog to a dog park is a great way to meet new people with similar interests.
  • Build Your Children’s Confidence: Having a dog in the home can build confidence and manage anxiety and stress in children. Children who struggle with reading or math can gain confidence when reading aloud or reciting multiplication tables to their dog.
  • Excuse to Play: Training and playing with your dog also provides mental stimulation, helps unleash creativity and alleviates stress. Having a dog will also encourage you to exercise as you’ll need to walk your him or her regularly.
  • Routine: Having a daily schedule reduces stress for any individual. Having a dog that relies on you at specific times each day (feeding, walking, and sleeping) can help establish a routine. 

cute dog

For style on Instagram follow @alisondeyette and for more cute dog photos follow the girls @pennyloveslucy.

Since my husband and I volunteer with an animal rescue we always encourage others to adopt. You can learn more about how to adopt a dog from our favorite rescues, The Rescue Train and Marley’s Mutts dog rescue.

And see my PSA video about the benefits of dog adoption and why you should spay and neuter your pets.

 

Style Expert Alison Deyette is a TV + digital host and Los Angeles stylist who was recently named one of the top stylists in Los Angeles by Variety, WWD, Angeleno and Modern Luxury magazines. Alison works with clients in Southern California, New York, and other cities across the country. Alison has helped kick-start the new look of hundreds of women and men, and worked with people of all sizes and shapes — from petite to tall, slender to plus-size. As a stylist and fashion director, Alison has styled and directed photo shoots all over the world with models, celebrities and real women for a variety of magazines, including: ModeGood HousekeepingPeople Style Watch, Woman’s Day, Ocean Drive, Real Beauty and Fitness. With Alison’s guidance, you can discover or enhance YOUR individual look, fit your figure and access the sophisticated, sexy or simply knockout new you!
Alison appears regularly on Good Morning America, TODAYAccess HollywoodThe RealThe ViewSteve Harvey and is the Style Expert for KTLA’s Morning News. Alison is currently host of the AOL series, The Savings Experiment, one of the lead style hosts on Joyus.com and the style expert for HSN. She is a contributing fashion editor for Real SimpleLife & StyleIn Touch and Closer Weekly.  She was the host of Pocket the Difference, a co-host of TLC’s 10 Years Younger and TBS’ Movie and a Makeover and the weekly Style Contributor on Hallmark Channel’s Marie.  In addition, she has hosted several web series including: AOL’s In the KnowHerSay with Soleil Moon Frye, Playtex’s Bra Makeover series, A Secret Worth Sharing. These web series collectively have more than 100 million views.    

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