Last Updated on May 3, 2023 by Pets Feed
About two out of three families have a pet. It is impossible to count the number of dogs, cats, hamsters, parrots, chinchillas, etc. However, the researchers note that the number of pets is increasing in all major cities around the world. Scientists associate this trend with a change in family structure and global urbanization. Residents of megacities give birth less, divorce more often, experience constant overload, stress, loneliness and increasingly need someone stable, fluffy, shaggy, with whom it is easier and safer to build relationships.
Cats or dogs: which animal will save you from loneliness
The number of people living alone is increasing every year. Studies show that living alone can lead to higher levels of anxiety, lower immunity, and the development of depression. People who are alone are often advised to have a pet (usually a cat or dog) to take care of and not to be silent in the apartment. Psychology Today understands which is more suitable – a cat or a dog. T&P tells the main point of the perennial controversy.
According to a large German study of 1160 single people over the age of 65, living with a cat does not promise psychological improvement. Cat owners felt as alone as those who had no pets at all.
Dog owners rated their condition much better: they were less likely to experience feelings of social isolation and loneliness. Especially women – however, the researchers associate this with local characteristics: In Germany, single elderly men receive a lot of social support.
Why is a dog more likely to save from loneliness than a cat? The answer is simpler than it seems. Dogs, unlike cats, need to be promoted, which encourages their owners to leave home, meet old acquaintances or get to know new people. In general, the secret to happy solitude lies not at all in a cute animal, but in good old human communication.
Why is this important? We’ve already covered how loneliness affects health, the ability to think rationally, and the ability to be creative (spoiler: bad). And if we have to choose a companion, we must take into account that dogs once helped us evolve and cats have always spat on us.
How do animals affect us?
Do you see. When you pet a cat or a dog, what happens to you? It becomes easier for you to communicate with those who are with you at the moment, you calm down, thoughts line up in a certain order, unpleasant emotions disappear. These are observations. But from a physiological point of view, a person relieves muscle tension, improves digestion, lowers pressure, many are pleasantly drowsy.
Why does this happen? All animals are bioenergetic. They are sensitive to negative energy that comes from your thoughts or from your diseased organs. Plus, they know how to turn it into a positive. Therefore, when you feel bad, overwhelmed with joyless thoughts, have a stomach ache or headache, our faithful friends will certainly respond. They huddle against the sore spot, pull up, purr, coo, dry their tears with their tongues, laugh, distract.
How do pets affect a person’s psycho-emotional state?
Despite the fact that keeping a pet can take time, effort and money, animals live with owners in many homes. Most likely, pets bring more than they take away, and there is also an opinion that they have a good effect on the human psyche, make it more resistant to stress, etc.
This applies not only to the presence of a living being nearby and the energy exchange that occurs between the owner and the animal, but sometimes also to a direct action that has a positive effect on health .
Some scientists claim that the presence of a pet leads to lower blood pressure in hypertensive patients, and older people move around more confidently if they have a dog. A number of studies have been conducted by scientists in conjunction with psychologists. These studies aimed to determine how animals affect the mental and emotional state of humans. Thus, it turned out that most pets are able to remove negative energy from a person and even calm him down. Such a process can go unnoticed for a person: communication with a pet is natural for him, and sometimes even routine, but even after a person goes to the aquarium to observe the fish, he can feel better through this contact.
Some psychologists advise buying parrots if you want to be in a good mood more often. It is believed that these birds not only help with their energy, but also allow you to have a positive attitude. The smallest thing that can help is the simplest contact with animals: look at them, listen to them, play with them and you may already feel lighter. It is not for nothing that the observation of fish and birds is equated with an independent occupation. You can really spend a lot of time on this, not to mention the animals with which direct contact is possible.
As for cats, they feel a person’s mood very well, and it’s no secret. If the cat feels that something is wrong with the owner, he does not turn away from him, but, on the contrary, agrees to help him. Sometimes with physical pain in humans, cats sense where that pain is concentrated and lay down on the sore spot in an effort to heal.
Dogs, due to their greater attachment and loyalty to humans, provide humans with great psychological support. The presence of a dog next to a person in moments of a negative emotional state or breakdowns significantly reduces the effect of such a state on a person.
The positive impact of animals on humans
Pet therapy is a positive effect of animals on human health. Since ancient times, people have intuitively divined the beneficial effects of animals on humans. For example, in ancient Greece, it was believed that the god of healing Asclepius appeared to the sick in the form of a dog and licked their wounds. In Christianity, saints were depicted with their faithful companions – dogs that, according to legend, healed their owners.
But in ancient Egypt, it was believed that cats not only help with human recovery, but also have supernatural powers. Therefore, they were treated as deities. But pet therapy only became an independent method of treatment in the middle of the 20th century.
Nowadays, the positive effect of animals on the human body is recognized by the World Health Organization.