Since I was a child, there has always been some kind of pet in my family. When I was growing up, my parents had two dogs, hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs and cats. As a grown up with my own family we have had two dogs, rabbits, cats and even a horse.

I am lucky enough to have had experienced, first hand, the pleasures of having pets in the family, both as a child and adult. I have learned more with every pet, and I’d like to share the knowledge that I’ve got.

The human-animal relationship

I realize that having pets is not for everyone. It depends a lot on your lifestyle, how you want to live and how a pet fit into that. Though, there is no denying, there has always been a special connection between humans and animals. It proves right as more and more people have service pets to help their either mental or physical health. You can see this in many hospitals which choose to use pets in their treatment of sick people. Also in nursing homes you can see the calming effect this gives their residents.

I have done my research, and I found a lot of information I wish I knew when we got our first pets. There are a lot of handy tips and tricks that are good to know when getting a pet for the first time. Throughout my searches I haven’t found anything remotely negative about being around pets or including them in your family.

From what I have found, of studies and articles from around the world, it tells us that there are many positive effects of having a pet; such as decreased blood pressure, cholesterol and heart rate. It also decreases stress and helps with depression ++. In other words, it helps you live longer and healthier lives.

I have in my experience been in a situation where we chose the wrong dog for our situation. It was our first pet dog. We got it because we had the opportunity to get it for free, but unfortunately it turned out a mixed breed between a German Shepherd, Border Collie plus one more, was not the best fit for us. We had two children, who were just a couple years old at the time. When we got it, we didn’t think about all the discipline we had to teach him. It was a stressful experience, and it didn’t fit our lifestyle. We ended up giving it to a kind man who lived alone. After visiting them some months later we could see clearly that we made the right decision to give him to someone else.

The lesson I learned with this is that you should always do your homework before getting a pet. Getting a pet will make changes in your life, and to make sure those are positive changes, do your best to find out if this pet/breed is the right one for you

Pets are beneficial for your health

There are many alternatives for a pet, and we know that just being around animals have positive effects on us. I will give a few examples here what you can gain by having a dog or a cat.

  • Reduced stress.
  • Decreased blood pressure, cholesterol and heart rate.
  • Reduced risk of depression.
  • Cats are great “medicine” for lowering the risk of having a heart attack, stroke or developing a heart disease.
  • Dogs often makes you more social and more active.
  • Reduce allergies and boost immune functions. Especially positive for children growing up around pets.

These are just a few examples of what being around or having pets in our life can give us, but there are many more. As mentioned earlier, service pets help immensely with putting us in the right emotional state, they comfort us when we need it, and they can in some cases help us do tasks that we might not be physically able to do ourselves.

Fact is, if you know what you’re getting into, getting a pet shouldn’t be a problem.

Read more about:Is getting a dog the right decision for you?