Does owning a dog help an only child?

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Studies have shown that when an only child receives a dog, they tend to feel less lonely and view their pet as a sibling. They learn how to “share” their parents' time and their own space, they learn to be respectful to another living thing, to be kind, and to be loving; just as they would with a sibling.

Study Finds That Dog Owners Live Longer.

Now there's even more of a reason to get a Dog: it might help you live longer.

A Swedish study published in the Journal of Scientific Reports Friday found that dog ownership is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, amongst other benefits.

According to a 2017 report by the American College Health Association, college students report high rates of stress, loneliness, anxiety and depression. Studies have shown that pets can increase people's levels of oxytocin, a hormone that reduces anxiety and lowers blood pressure, by 300 percent.

Dogs help humans reduce stress.

Studies show that interactions with therapy animals can decrease stress in humans.

Playing with or petting an animal can increase levels of the stress-reducing hormone oxytocin and decrease production of the stress hormone cortisol.

Reduced stress can also benefit physical health.


(Therapy dogs are specially trained for this.) But just having a pet around the house can also be good for kids with ADHD.

Pets offer unconditional love and companionship.

Petting and cuddling an animal can reduce feelings of anxiety and stress.


Pet dogs can also benefit adults and federal health officials recommend that adults consider getting a dog.

"Animal-assisted therapy with dogs affects children's mental health and developmental disorders by reducing anxiety and arousal or enhancing attachment," they added.


A new study lends support to the idea that interacting with a pet benefits many children with autism.

"children with autism may especially benefit from interacting with dogs, which can provide unconditional, nonjudgmental love and companionship," says the new study's author, Gretchen Carlisle.


10 Ways to Help Your Child Overcome a Fear of Dogs (and 1 Tip to Avoid)

  1. First, understand your child's fear
  2. Then, watch what you say…
  3. Take puppy steps…
  4. Meet an adult dog, not a puppy…
  5. Learn a little doggish…
  6. Search out dressed-up dogs
  7. Petting a pooch…
  8. Prepare for the sniff and lick.
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