For over a year, Americans have been living under conditions that change on a day-to-day basis, new regulations and laws that seem to restrict freedoms and shutter businesses, and fears that cleaned out supermarket shelves in the beginning as we stockpiled everything we could get our hands on “just in case”. Every day, we have been getting reports of dire circumstances at hospitals, stressed-out medical staff, and exhausted paramedics and first responders. We have been living in
a state of heightened stress and fear, and many of us have responded in a way that scientists say makes total sense: we have gone out and adopted animals. Cats and dogs primarily, though many other types of pets have seen an uptick as well. Some cats and dogs, as well as other animals, are even being adopted if they are missing limbs or disabled. If you have a disabled pet who could benefit from the support of an orthotic or prosthetic, Specialized Pet Solutions creates custom fit dog orthotics, dog knee braces, even prosthetic legs for dogs, and so much more. We work with a wide variety of animals in helping support them better, whether it is a torn ACL in dogs or a different type of injury, we create animal prosthetics to help them enjoy life more fully.
So why do we adopt pets in response to a huge increase in stress in their lives? What does adopting pets have to do with a global pandemic? As it turns out, owning a pet comes with a nice bouquet of health benefits, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These benefits include:
- Decreasing your blood pressure
- Lowering your cholesterol levels
- Improving opportunities for social connection (with masks and distancing, of course)
- Reducing feelings of loneliness
- Decreasing the levels of triglycerides (a type of fat similar to cholesterol)
- Increasing your opportunities for exercise and outdoor activities
Pets Improve Our Lives
Talk about a lot of good reasons to own a pet! Furthermore, here are five ways that pets improve life during a pandemic:
- Pets can sense your emotions and stress levels. They are the best listeners you’ve got, so dismiss the idea that you’re crazy and go ahead and talk to them. Some of them may talk back — cats in particular are often quite vocal — and studies have shown that simply speaking your stressors, fears or concerns can offer relief and give you the chance to start to work through those feelings. Thanks, beloved pets!
- Pets are great for snuggling. Since we can’t have any contact with other humans during this time, we’re missing out on a lot of physical touch cues that make social isolation even harder. Snuggling up with Fido or Fluffy feels great, reduces depression and releases feel-good hormones. You might also find that it eases physical pain, helps you relax, and ease tension. For cat owners in particular: cats purr at a frequency that is healing for humans. Meow!!
- Pets give great comic relief. They’re often funny unintentionally, which makes it even funnier. No matter what they are doing to make you laugh, laughter is the best medicine, so simply watching your pet’s antics can improve your mood tremendously.
- Pets give you a chance to share their sweetness: on social media, especially. People love seeing pictures of pets, and there are boatloads of groups dedicated to sharing pet pictures. There is nothing like a funny pet pic or video to make someone else’s day, and boost your mood as well.
- Pets push you to get outside, because that’s where they want to be. Whether it is on a leash, on your shoulder, or in a special stroller or even a backpack, bringing your pet with you on an adventure outdoors makes the enjoyment of being outside even better.
Wow, our pets do so much for us without even knowing it…or maybe they do? What do you think? How does your pet help you relieve stress and deal with the pandemic’s uncertainty and difficulties? We’d love to hear about it. At Specialized Pet Solutions, we offer custom fit support devices and prosthetics for animals from dogs to horses to goats and sheep. We love what we do, whether it is fitting a dog knee brace or creating an orthotic device for a horse. Contact us today to find out more about how we help disabled animals.