The Love of a Dog–How Dogs Help People Who Are Struggling With Depression

What would the world be like without dogs? I can’t even imagine. Dogs are amazing creatures. They love, give, serve, and are lifelong companions. Life without dogs would be dismal at best. They add life, laughter, and love to our lives, and to some people who know the darkness of depression dogs serve a greater purpose. Dogs have amazing abilities that can help people who are struggling with depression. Here are five of those amazing things dogs can do to help.

  • Give Unconditional Love – Dogs have been labeled as man’s best friend, and it’s no surprise why. Dogs are loyal and loving, and ask nothing in return but your love and your care. This unconditional love makes no difference to your furry friend if you’re down. You can tell all your secrets and worries to your best friend with no concern for negative consequences. All you’ll receive back is love.
  • Give and Receive Loving Touches – It’s been shown by many studies that petting animals can not only give them a sense of peace, but you as well. It’s soothing, loving, gentle, and calming. Often times, stress and/or anxiety accompany depression, so the loving touches given to your dog and by your dog helps your stress level drop tremendously.
  • Improve Our Physical Health – WebMD states that dogs actually help improve your overall health. You get more exercise, sleep better (if they’re not waking you up at night), have lower blood pressure, lower heart rate, and experience less stress.
  • Provide Companionship – Dogs constant companionship give you a sense of peace and an uplifting feeling. Many dogs can sense when you’re not quite yourself and will not leave your side. They can also be a loyal friend when you feel alone. If you have other medical issues that may require help, dogs can often sense when you need that help before you even realize it.
  • Give Us A Purpose – There is a purpose and responsibility when you have a pet to care for, so when you don’t feel like getting out of bed or out into the world, your dog can give you a reason to do it anyway. When you get out into the world and interact with others, healing can begin. Your dog knows when things aren’t right, but that doesn’t stop the need for walks and social interaction. Dogs give us a purpose and make our lives much more fulfilling.

Whatever it is you are going through day in and day out, you can know without a doubt that you are never alone. Your dog is with you through thick and thin, and asks for nothing more than you give him. Dogs are not only man’s best friend, but they are life-savers, hope-givers, and unconditional love-givers that help the ones they love in many ways.

What are some ways your dog helps you feel better?

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