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How Dogs Boost Immunity and Improve Human Health

Posted Oct 14, 2013
By Calli Halgren

How Dogs Boost Immunity and Improve Human Health

Dog owners rarely need proof that they are truly man’s best friend. But did you know dogs may also be your immune system’s best friend? Contrary to popular belief, research shows that a home with a furry friend can reduce the likelihood of childhood allergies by 14 percent.  Anyone who has ever wiped down muddy paw prints knows dogs aren’t necessarily the cleanest family members, but the extra dirt and allergens a dog introduces to a home actually boosts immune system chemicals in their human owners.

Other ways canines make life healthier
Dogs may not only boost your immune system, they can also help boost your heart health. Having a dog means regular daily walks with your four-legged friend. While dogs can encourage more strenuous activity like hiking or jogging, just the simple act of taking them out for the casual stroll they need a few times a day can boost your heart rate and lower cholesterol and triglycerides.  Studies show patients who have suffered a heart attack tend to live longer if they own a pet.
 
Everyone who has ever gotten a wet lick from a pup knows they have a unique ability to put a smile on your face. It goes much deeper than that, in fact.  Not only does enjoying time with your pet boost serotonin and dopamine levels, but dogs have been used to aid in therapy rehabilitation for years, and can even help fight depression in terminal patients.

Insure your four-legged friends, too!
Statistical proof that a pet provides benefit to your health makes returning the favor easier. Pet insurance can make regular checkups and vaccinations easier on your wallet, and it can help guard against unforeseen expenses due to accident or illness. Pet insurance plans start at less than $1 per day, so it’s affordable coverage for quality care when you pet needs it most. For more information about pet insurance, visit healthedeals.com to receive a free quote.
 
Davis, J. L. 5 ways pets can improve your health. Web MD, Retrieved on 7 Oct. 2013 from http://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/features/health-benefits-of-pets

Calli Halgren is a marketing coordinator at IHC Health Solutions, specializing in copywriting, editing and multimedia training materials. Calli holds a bachelor's degree in Communications from the University of Minnesota. She currently volunteers at political campaigns and a pet rehoming society.