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  • Writer's pictureDr. Raisa Lerner

Pets and Your Health

Our pets make us healthier.

Studies have shown that owning a pet can improve fitness, lower stress and increase happiness. In addition to love and loyalty, our pets can give us real health benefits, including:

  1. Decreased blood pressure

  2. Decreased cholesterol levels

  3. Decreased triglyceride levels

  4. Decreased feelings of loneliness

  5. Increased opportunities for exercise and outdoor activities

  6. Increased opportunities for socialization

Whether you are playing with, feeding or cleaning up after your pet, it is important to wash your hands to help reduce the risk of getting sick from germs pets can carry. If you or a family member are concerned about illness, talk to a doctor and mention the animals you’ve recently had contact with.

Water and soap are best for hand washing, but you can use hand sanitizer until running water and soap are available. Adults should always assist young children with hand washing.

Animals can serve as a source of comfort and support. Therapy dogs are especially good at this.

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