The Health Benefits of Owning a Dog


I have had Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Social Anxiety for years now and I have never felt better than I do since adopting my dog, Kona. I’ve mentioned in past articles that Kona has been God’s gift for my life. There are TONS of benefits to owning a dog, but did you know it actually is good for your health too? Just in case you need a few more reasons why you should run to your local shelter and meet your furry soulmate…

As if dogs couldn’t be any more perfect, your pooch is beneficial to your health and well-being! So, I compiled an informative list of a few ways dogs can help improve your lifestyle (that way you can convince your mom, significant other, etc. that you NEED one).

Dogs are therapeutic // Even though many people blame not getting a dog on “how much work they are” or “too much stress”, owning a dog can be quite therapeutic. After a long day at work, I look forward to nothing more than snuggling with my pooch. Dogs have a way of influencing human’s emotions. Cuddling or petting a dog can release serotonin (a happy hormone). That’s why dogs are said to help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. Dogs have been called “counselors in fur”. They are used for therapy in hospitals, emotional support, and service animals.

Owning a dog can bring TONS of happiness into your life.

Dog owners tend to be more active // I hate going to the gym but I don’t mind taking my dog on walks, running around the dog park, or playing with my pooch instead of watching TV. In general, Dog-owning families often promote physical activity. Owning a dog may give you the incentive to get out of the house and spend more time outside. Sometimes, you may not want to but HAVE to — for your carpets sake. Resulting in dog-owners being more likely to stick to their fitness plans. Dogs are great motivation. Want to lose some extra weight? Get a pup.

Dogs promote social interaction //  I actually met my close friends because of Kona. Kona would drag me to the dog park every day where I got to know some other dog moms in my neighborhood. After seeing each other all the time because of our dogs, we started to hang out outside of the park. While dogs make great companions, they can also help create human-to-human friendships. Most dog-owners can attest to this, strangers scramble to pet your dog and talk to you during outings. Your pooch also opens the doorway to conversations and make a great conversation topic!

Dogs are a positive distraction // As I said before, there’s nothing more I love than snuggling up with my pooch after a long day at work. Dogs offer a healthy form of distraction and take your mind off stress. Dogs can give you a momentary break of relief during the hard times. They can be a ray of sunshine when it’s dark. 

Dogs offer unconditional love // A dog doesn’t love you just because you take care of him. No matter if we do something he likes, give him food and water, let him sleep with us in bed, feed him loads of treats, or discipline him if he chews up your shoes  — they still think you’re the bee’s knees! Dogs will support you and offer you love even if the rest of the world turns their back. A dog will love their owner unconditionally and never judge. They’ll still be smiling and giving you kisses when you lost your job, smell a little funky, or got into a fight with your girlfriend.

Dogs teach you responsibility // Dogs NEED you. They depend on your for food, water, exercise, shelter, and health. You will have to get out of bed 7 am on a Sunday to take them out even if you don’t want to because you’re responsible for them. (But you won’t mind that much because they’ll give you tons of kisses afterward.) Dogs teach you more about responsibility, their lives are in your hands and they need you to survive! It can also be a very comforting and overwhelming feeling to know a living creature depends on you that much… In some cases, they can be someone’s reason to live.

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  1. Allison @neversaydiebeauty

    So nicely done. I love the graphics you created! Yes, there are many health benefits and emotional benefits of owning a dog. Alas, I travel too much for work, but there are about a million dogs in my neighborhood (in fact, 3 live next door and 2 more across the street) so I visit with them but don’t own them 😉

    17 . Nov . 2017
  2. Melanie

    I totally agree with this and you raise some really god points. Keeps you super fit too with all the walking and sometimes running x

    17 . Nov . 2017
  3. Charlotte

    Yes to all of the things on this list. I was just talking to a friend who is currently looking out for her Neighbor’s corgi—she was so surprised that everyone comes over to greet her on walks and to pet the dog. They truly are social beings and they are the best for anxiety and depression; I know my Buster has been very helpful where this is concerned too. Great post!!

    17 . Nov . 2017
  4. Kuleigh

    If we can get our dogs out to the puppy phase they’ll be the perfect companions.

    17 . Nov . 2017
  5. Patricia @ Grab a Plate

    I’d be lost without my dog! My family didn’t have dogs growing up, but I now have a dog of my own (my second dog). I can’t believe how amazing it is to have a dog! So much love, both ways. I’m glad you’re feeling well!

    18 . Nov . 2017
  6. Elise Cohen Ho

    My daughter wants to adopt a dog but I am afraid that with college it will become too much and then he will move into our house. My cat would be completely unhappy even though dogs do offer lots of benefit.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  7. maria

    I’ve became so active ever since we adopted our little pup 🙂 He is so energetic, we try to walk him as much as we can, because he loves going to the park so much!
    Dogs really are amazing little beings 🙂 The have such a kind nature and can be so gentle and sensitive with humans:)

    18 . Nov . 2017
  8. Flora_the_Sweaterist

    Agreed with everything you’ve said. Dogs are just amazing companions and they give so much love! Same is true for cats. Well, they don’t really force you to be active, but they certainly teach you how to relax XD I never feel more at peace with the world than when I have my purring kitty with me.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  9. Indu

    I do not have any dog but my friends do have and I have heard amazing stories from them. Your post is very informative with lovely pics of adorable dogs.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  10. Cait Weingartner

    Great post, full of wonderful advice. I for one, couldn’t imagine my life without a dog in it. My Callie girl and I have shared so many wonderful experiences and adventures, and she truly is my best friend!

    18 . Nov . 2017
  11. Shubhada Bhide

    Oh! These are really nice health benefits of owning a dog. I really agree with these can’t imagine life without a Man’s best friend. My dog is one of my stress relievers.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  12. corinne & kirsty

    Having a dog must be so nice. It’s more strolls in the park, more running, more activity as you said. It must be amazing to get back home and be welcomed by a super happy dog!

    18 . Nov . 2017
  13. courtney

    Aww this is the sweetest post. I’m a cat mom myself and I feel like some of the health benefits are transferable. Just having a happy little fur ball to come home to helps your heart.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  14. Sue Tanya McHorgh

    Dogs are definitely positive distraction. Whenever i feel low or not in a good mood my dog knows it and he always comes around me trying to lick my toes or something and it always cheers me up.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  15. Paige Flamm

    We want to get a dog so badly for our daughter with special needs, but can’t in our rental right now. They’re amazing companions though.

    18 . Nov . 2017
  16. Agnes

    I am one of those people who likes pets from afar but cannot take care of one because of my busy schedule. These are all good and true points. Dogs definitely have a positive impact on people.

    19 . Nov . 2017
  17. Christine

    I couldn’t agree with you more on this topic. My son is a great teen with autism and we are strongly considering getting him a therapy dog. Without or without the special training, dogs offer us comfort, love, security, and a bond like no other.

    19 . Nov . 2017
  18. Taslyn

    When I was in the Caribbean I had two dogs in the UK not having a garden I don’t really own one but having a dog really keeps you fit.

    19 . Nov . 2017
  19. Taslyn

    When I was in the Caribbean I had two dogs in the UK not having a garden I don’t really own one but having a dog really keeps you fit!

    19 . Nov . 2017
  20. Preet

    What a beautiful post, I like all the points you mentioned. I can relate to your points, they are the most amazing creatures, I had my dog back home and really miss him.

    19 . Nov . 2017
  21. Ellie Plummer

    Totally agree with this. If I could have 100 dogs, I would. I love fluffy animals so much, I want them all.

    19 . Nov . 2017
  22. Cindy

    I’m so happy for you that you found Kona, what a blessing. My cats provide the same love and companionship for me. Animals are the best!

    20 . Nov . 2017
  23. Heather ♥

    oh my goodness that first photo of the puppies is so stinking adorable. I can’t handle the cuteness. I do agree that dogs are pretty awesome. I love the furry members of my family very much.

    20 . Nov . 2017
  24. Greta

    I tell this to everyone I meet! My pup helps me with anxiety and is always there when I don’t feel good or have a good day. So much unconditional love!

    20 . Nov . 2017
  25. Marie

    I have a dog that I love so dearly, and i very much agree with the benefits that you listed here! I hope more people could discover the wonder that dogs bring into our lives!

    20 . Nov . 2017
  26. Amy Dong

    OMG, I could add about 20 more things to your fab list b/c I’m such a dog lover 🙂 We’ve always had a dog and I love having dogs around for the kids to grow up with. It teaches them SOO much responsibility, as all my kids have tasks on a daily basis revolved around the pet.

    21 . Nov . 2017
  27. Courtney Blacher

    Wow, there are so many of them. I am more cat person, but I admit dogs are more loyal.

    21 . Nov . 2017
  28. Tiffany Yong

    I love all your reasons and ‘health benefits for having a dog/ Totally agree but I have asthma and sensitive nose. It’s really expensive to have a dog in Singapore hence I wouldn’t really have it~ your pups are so adorable!

    21 . Nov . 2017
  29. Taylor Smart

    since moving out of my mothers ive found not owning a dog has killed my body! im walking less because i dont have to and i can defo say i miss the cuddles

    28 . Nov . 2017
  30. Nichole

    Such a great post! I have two fur babies and they are my whole world- I’m definitely a crazy dog mom! I knew how special dogs could be but never realized the health benefits. I knew some people used them for anxiety, like in your case. I have mild anxiety so I defnitely can see how dogs benefit your health mentally and physically. I love that my dogs know when I’m sick because they’re extra cuddly and affectionate. It amazes me.

    xo nichole / thedailypursuit

    03 . Dec . 2017

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