Five Reasons to Give Thanks to Your Furry Friends

Merritt Milam | November 24, 2015

‘Tis the season to give a special thanks to friends and family—especially those who are furry! With Thanksgiving right around the corner, we feel it’s the right time to tell our furry friends and family just how thankful we are that they’re in our lives. Here are five pawfect reasons why we love our pets:

They are our best friends

Through thick and thin, these creatures are our confidants, exercise partners, sleeping buddies, meal-sharers, guardians, shoulders to lean on, and most importantly, our best friends. Who else in the world gets so excited to greet you at the front door after a long day of work? Or sits on the couch with muddy paws to gaze out of the window until you come home? No one. These pals are one of a kind, and if you’re lucky enough to have one of these tail wagging creatures greet you when you walk through the door each day, make sure you show them just how thankful you are for their unconditional love.

They keep us fit

If you’re a dog owner, you know the importance of regular exercise and outdoor activities for your pooch — both are crucial to your canine’s mental and physical health, and are beneficial to you as well. Did you know pet owners tend to have better circulation because of their activity levels? Whether it’s hiking, swimming, running, or just wrestling around – pets keep your energy levels up and increase your activity.

They keep us healthy

Researchers have revealed countless studies that prove the health benefits of owning a pet. For example, having a pet in your home can actually lower a child’s risk of developing animal allergies by 33 percent. Alzheimer’s patients suffer fewer anxiety attacks if there is a pet in the home. Pets reduce stress in humans, which we all know is needed. The rhythmic petting and grooming of your pet is comforting to not just your furry friend, but to you as well. Connecting with your dog or cat releases the hormone oxytocin, which is related to stress and anxiety relief, and helps reduce blood pressure and lower cortisol levels. Pets are good for the heart, literally—studies have shown that heart attack patients who have pets survive longer than those who don’t. Male pet owners tend to have lower cholesterol levels than those without pets. A 20-year-old study once found that cat owners were 40 percent less likely to pass away from a heart attack! The list could go on, but we’ll stop here.

They find joy in the littlest things

Squirrels. Shadows. Squirrels. Crumbs. Squirrels. Tennis balls. High-pitched voices. Squirrels. Frisbees. Squirrels. Water. Squirrels. Mail men. Did we mention squirrels? Man’s best friends are busting with happiness about the smallest things in life. If only we could do the same! Thank you to our wagging friends who remind us to look for joy in all aspects of life – even in the bushy-tailed squirrel who rampages your yard.

Their love is unconditional

No matter what kind of mood you’re in – cheerful, amused, aggravated, lazy, grumpy – you name it, your dog will always spend hours staring at you longingly, wagging his tail over and over again just to convince you he’ll love you no matter what. How can you ever find a love better than that? So thank you to all of our furry friends who constantly fill our lives with joy. Your love is unconditional, and we feel it every minute of every day.