The Commonwealth at York

You already know how much value your pets bring to your life in the best of times, but during a global pandemic, they help you to cope both mentally and physically. Not only do pets provide their owners with companionship and unconditional love that can support daily feelings of connection and purpose, but they also motivate you to move and play more, reducing your risk for high blood pressure and lowering your cholesterol along the way.

Research shows that pet owners visit the doctor less and have lower incidences of cardiovascular disease. Dog owners walk and exercise more, and cat owners enjoy the scientifically-proven healing benefits of their cats’ purring sounds and lap cuddles. Even the act of petting a cat can lower blood pressure instantly, and having the support and companionship of your pet during challenging times can help to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety.

There’s no doubt that your pet has been filling your life with joy and meaning since the day you met. As you continue to navigate these challenging times during Covid 19, your pet’s companionship is more important than ever.

Heart Health
Studies show that owning a cat or dog is actually good for your health in several ways. Dog owners reap enormous benefits from pups that motivate them to get up and move each day by way of walks. Cat owners enjoy increased movement as well, with playful cats and kittens. Dog owners especially have reduced rates of cardiovascular disease, and both dogs and cats provide their owners with heart healthy, lowered blood pressure and cholesterol.

Decreased Stress
Being a pet owner fills your world with joy and meaning, and it also means caring for an animal that can significantly reduce your stress levels. Studies show that pet owners show a reduction in cortisol – the stress hormone. This is linked to numerous health benefits, including stronger immunity and an improved sense of contentment in their lives. If you’ve noticed how much being around your pet boosts your mood, now you have scientific proof to back you up.

Companionship & Connection
During the Covid 19 pandemic, many people are dealing with isolation, loss and loneliness like never before. Being a pet owner provides instant companionship and connection at home. A pet’s unconditional love can provide a variety of mental health benefits, including fostering a sense of meaning, purpose and connection during challenging times.

Healing Hugs & Cuddles
During a time when hugging, high fives and handshakes are off limits, your pets are still safe to hug and cuddle, providing much needed sensory input and actual healing hugs. Cats, in particular, can provide numerous health benefits to their owners just through petting. Studies show that petting animals resets the parasympathetic nervous system, providing a calming effect that can be soothing. A cat’s purr is proven to provide actual healing benefits through it’s sound frequency, which actually improves both bone density and healing after trauma or injury.

Decreased Depression & Anxiety
Studies have found that pet owners visit the doctor less, have better outcomes and improved mental health. This isn’t just because pets are cute and cuddly (although those reasons surely count), but because pet ownership provides a sense of lasting connection. The bond you share with your pet motivates you to move and play more, leading to decreased incidences of depression and anxiety.