Lounging on the couch with your beloved cocker spaniel might be a lovely thing to do on a lazy morning, but there is nothing you can do once their wet nose touches your skin, urging you to get up and get out for that morning exercise. Indeed, your dog may be able to instill physical and mental fitness in you, even without you knowing. Here are a few things your cocker does that actually provides positive health outcomes for you:
1. REDUCING STRESS
Dogs are natural stress relievers, and it’s more than because they are so cute to look at. Dog petting can actually reduce cortisol, the stress hormone. The cocker’s affectionate ways also give a great deal of relaxation to your senses. Your body sees an elevation in serotonin levels when you are interacting with your dog, keeping your anxiety at bay.
2. ENCOURAGING EXERCISE
Being an energetic breed, your cocker would be looking to you for their exercising needs. Statistics actually show that dog owners are frequent walkers than a non-owner, and this is because most dogs love to take long walks outside. This is beneficial for you as well, since walking burns calories effectively and can also improve your mental faculty.
3. INCREASING PHYSICAL MOBILITY
Having a cocker spaniel keeps you moving, even when it’s only to feed or groom them. When you actively participate in pet care, you do tasks that require a lot of physical movement, and this is actually good for you and your body. Keeping your body moving reduces the risk of blood clot formation, and improves oxygenation of your body organs due to excellent blood flow.
4. PROVIDING SAFETY AND SECURITY
Security and safety are basic needs in Maslow’s theory, and therefore must be fulfilled to gain a holistic well-being. Having a dog in your life, especially if you are suffering from conditions such as phobias or PTSD, can greatly improve your well-being. Dogs unconditionally love and protect their owner without expecting anything in return, and this will ease your worries, making you feel safe and secure.
5. TEACHING PLAY AND RELAXATION
Your cocker would get a kick out of play time, and agreeing to their urging for play can actually be highly beneficial for you. Playing games such as tug of war or fetch me elevates your pet’s mood, which in turn elevates yours as well. Your body produces more serotonin and dopamine, and both these hormones improve your mood significantly and leave you feeling really good.
6. PROTECTING AGAINST CARDIOVASCULAR PROBLEMS
Studies show that owning a dog significantly lowers your blood pressure. Aside from this, the physical mobility that decreases your risk for blood clots also improves your blood flow, preventing you from developing serious cardiovascular problems. Some evidences suggest that dog owners are healthier and may live three years longer than a non-dog owner. Your cocker is a key to a healthier heart!
An active lifestyle for you and your dog greatly advances your overall health and keeps you physically and mentally fit. Do not hesitate to take long walks or grant regular play time for your cocker spaniel, because these activities keep you fit and healthy, too.