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The Not-So-Obvious Benefits Of Owning A Pet…

By February 14, 2018 January 2nd, 2019 Uncategorized

How pets are changing human lives…

Valentines Day and Family Day! Time to reflect on those we love and belong with. From most pet owners (I almost would have said for ALL), a pet is a part of the family. We love our pets. As a pet owner, we have a buddy to cuddle with at the end of the day, we talk to our little one, whether it is a dog, budgie or even a gold fish. All vets in Markham know and help those families with pets.

Caring for a pet is not unidirectional. It goes both ways: The love, time, resources we give to our pets comes back to us in a significant way. Pets do improve our body and mind.

Let’s start with your heart. You probably know that heart disease is one of the leading causes of death? When you don’t exercise or stick to a good diet, you put your body at risk. This is the obvious part for dog owners: Those walks you take with Fido after work? Those games you play at the park? They get you up and moving. When you run, jump, or just go for a stroll around the neighbourhood, you exercise. As any veterinarian would tell you, your pet benefits from all this movement, too.

Hey, it’s better than sitting on the couch all day (which is bad for you, by the way). This seems logical.

Statistics however show that pets extend your life expectancy. You live longer owning a pet… ANY pet. Even if you just own a gold fish. That is the good news for Valentines Day. If you are looking for the special gift for the special person in your life, you may consider going out and buying a pet for her/him.

How could a budgie improve your health and extend your life, you ask?

Pets give us people a sense of purpose.

According to a report released by Lemos&Crane, there’s a connection between mental health and pet ownership. In their own words, pet ownership plays a role in “improving the quality of life and life satisfaction of people living with serious mental illness.” We might add that this applies to everyone in society. We all need a purpose, a sense of belonging, a feeling of being responsible for something, and we want to feel appreciated for being there. Your pet is fulfills all of these needs perfectly.

For millions of Canadians, this is great news. After all, according to Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, 57% of us have at least one animal around. Not just cats or dogs – birds, lizards, guinea pigs, and a host of other cool creatures call our homes their own. Step into any veterinary clinic and it soon becomes clear just how fascinating (and varied) pet ownership can be.


It’s not just adults who benefit from having a pet to call their own. Young adults struggling with a chronic disease consider their pet a member of their support network.

That’s not all. Pet ownership encourages socialization.

Sure, you socialize when you play with and feed your little pal, but you also interact with the vet and any staff at the veterinary clinic. Neighbors, strangers, and other pet owners feel may be compelled to start a conversation. You make connections.

Before you know it, you have a large network of friends!

One more thing we’d like to mention here: some people sleep better when they co-sleep their pets.

In a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report released by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2011, lack of sleep is “linked as a contributing factor to motor vehicle crashes, industrial disasters, and medical and other occupational errors.”

People who don’t get enough sleep can also develop diabetes or an obesity problem.

Of course, for countless Canadians (veterinarian or otherwise), a longer, healthier life is just icing on the cake. To them, pets make a life of any length worth living.

To put it short, we veterinarians and pet owners in Markham felt all along that a small little living being in our lives can influence our well-being so much.

What a good reason to celebrate Valentines and Family Day with your pooch!

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Dr. Ernst Marsig, veterinarian in Markham

Fear Free Certified Practitioner

Practicing Veterinary Medicine in Markham for a Long and Happy Life of ALL Your Pets.

Animal Hospital of Unionville, a veterinary clinic on the north side of  Hwy 7, serving all pets in Markham, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Stouffville, and North York since 1966. We are your family vets for dogs, cats, pocket pets (rabbits, chinchillas, gerbils, mice, rats, hamsters, guinea pigs, skinny pigs, etc.), ferrets, and birds (budgies, cockatiel, parrots, amazon, cockatoo, love birds, conures, African greys, finches, canaries, etc.). We pride ourselves to provide cost effective veterinary medicine and give you options for treatments. Some may think our services as cheap, but our goal is to give good value.

Disclaimer: No part of this website constitutes medical advice. Readers are advised to consult with their veterinarian.

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