We often talk about the welfare that humans provide to pets when we are adopted by a person or family: care, shelter, food, love... That's why we love to be with you! There is no better reward than finding a good home where to grow up and be loved. But it is no less real that we, pets, also have a differential and positive role in the lives of humans with whom we live. In this post, I bring you the first part of several pieces of information that corroborate this. As living beings we are valuable, don't forget it!
1. ADOPTING A KITY COULD PROTECT YOUR KIDS
In a survey of more than 2.200 young Scots ages 11-15 kids who had a strong bond with their kitties had a higher quality of life. The more attached they were, the more they feel fit, energetic and attentive and less sad and lonely; and the more they enjoyed their time alone, at leisure and at school. Also the National Institutes of Health (EEUU) released a study that found children under a year who were exposed to a cat were less likely to develop allergies -and not just pet allergies. According to Marshall Plate, M.D., chief of the allergic mechanisms section at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, “high pet exposure early in life appears to protect against only pet allergy but also other types of common allergies, such as allergy dust mites and grass". The physical contact between children and pets increases the levels of oxytocin in the blood. This hormone stimulates social relationships, improving behavioral aspects such as obsessive disorders.
2. HAVING A CAT AT HOME IS GOOD FOR YOUR HEART HEALTH
One study found that over a 10-year period cat owners were 30 per cent less like to die of a heart attack or stroke than non-cat owners. This might just be because cat owners are more relaxed and have lower stress in general. In another study, research followed 4.435 people for 13 years. People who never had owned cats in the past were likely to die from a heart attack during that time than people who owned cats, even when accounting for other risk factors like cholesterol or smoking. Beyond providing companionship, pets help humans to follow a routine and maintain responsibility and social activity, and it is a proven fact that there is nothing more relaxing than the act of petting! It is verified to reduce the production of the stress-causing hormone cortisol!
3. WE ARE GREAT FOR YOUR MENTAL HEALTH
Ninety-two cat owners and non-pet subjects were surveyed to determine the relationship between psychological health and pet ownership. The study hypothesized that cat owners would be more psychologically healthy than non-pet owners that this difference would be reflected in the cat owners having lower scores on the measures of general psychological health, depression, anxiety and sleep disturbance. The study also proposed that cat owners would be more nurturing. On questionnaires, they claim to feel more happy, more confident and less nervous, and to sleep, focus and face problems in their lives better.
4. WE HELP EMOTIONALLY
As Karin B. Stammbach and Dennis C. Turner of the university of Zurich explain (Understanding the Human-Cat relationship: Human Social Support or Attachment), cats aren’t simply small beings who are dependent on us. We also receive comfort from them. There is an entire scientific scale that mesures how much emotional support you get from your cat, based on how likely you are to seek them in different stressful situations. Remember that cats can perceive fear and other emotional states through non-verbal language, pheromones or adrenaline give away human emotions and we are sensitive to them, responding many times with proximity, caresses like licks, etc.
5. WITH A CAT, IF YOU ARE A MAN, YOU WILL FLIRT MORE
If you are a single guy and you can’t get a date, don´t worry and hurry to get a cat! A British poll found that 82 % of women agreed they are more attracted to men who like animals. And while having a dog will do wonders for your dating life, a whopping 90 percent of single women said that men who own a cat are “nicer” than other guy. “Positive feelings about dogs/cats may engender positive feelings about people or vice-versa”, wrote Rose Perrine and Hannah Osbourne of eastern Kentucky University.