You love your dog and your dog loves you. Don’t you both deserve to be as healthy as possible with one another? Of course you do! According to the American Heart Association, pet ownership — particularly having dogs as pets — may actually be responsible for a reduction in cardiovascular disease risk. Rad, right?
While you should obviously not run out a buy a dog purely because you do not want to have a hard attack, if you are responsible, caring, financially able and already willing to take full care of another being, this is just one more reason to get an awesome friend from your local shelter! Again, though, even the authors of the AHA’s statement on CVD’s risk being reduced say that ”pet adoption, rescue or purchase should not be done for the primary purpose of reducing CVD risk.” So, seriously: please only get an animal if you’re really capable and have thought about the obligations involved long and hard (ahem, Justin Bieber).
For those of you who already have a dog, as well as anybody planning on getting one, there are tons of activities you can do together that will keep both yourself and your pup all sorts of healthy. Not ready for the responsibility or simply don’t have enough room? You can also work at a dog walking or dog sitting agency, or even just volunteer at the local animal shelter so you can help available dogs being more adoptable!