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Nifty Ways a Dog Can Benefit You

 By Victoria Meisinger

Dogs take advantage of us. We walk them, feed them, even pick up their repulsive discharge while they just stand by and collect fleas. They may as well be parasites, and yet we could never imagine our lives without them. That is because not only do dogs depend on us, we depend on them too. Here are some nifty ways a dog can benefit you -- and why we love them so much.

Improves Physical Health

Owning a dog is no lazy work. They need exercise that usually involves you too. Although this exercise isn’t a chore, it can be fun and passes the hours quicker than a long run or intense P90X workout. The constant pain in your muscles or reminders of the time in these activities don’t allow much room in your mind for distraction. Playing with your dog can be easygoing and engaging enough to let the mind forget that you are, indeed, in the process of exercising. And what could be better than exercising but having too much fun to notice?

Another physical benefit to having a dog would be a higher immunity to allergens. Kids who grow up around a family pet are less likely to develop allergies because the pet assists them in building up a stronger immunity to things such as dust, grass, or even asthma. So dogs aren’t always the culprit of allergies, sometimes they can prevent them.

Lowers Stress

Did you know that the simple act of petting your dog has been proven to lower stress and produce more dopamine (the hormone responsible for happiness)? It’s true. Not only does it calm your dog, it also calms you. One study shows that owning a dog may be more effective than taking anxiety medication. A dog provides physical support and healthy distraction, whereas medication merely alters the mind and doesn’t always have the desired results. Animal therapy has become increasingly more popular in hospitals and recovery treatments. Dogs are cute, make us happy, and don’t cause side effects. What’s not to love (besides their repulsive discharge)?

Dogs aren't perfect, but neither are people. Sure, dogs may suck up a lot of money and resources, but the love and benefits are priceless. After all, who could ever love and miss you more? No one, you’re their whole world.

 To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Jacksonville, Fla.

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