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Copious studies have shown that pets can make our lives happier and healthier, but numerous personal anecdotes also support this thesis.

Here are some of those studies of how dogs improve our health:

  • A study this summer found that pets are important sources of emotional support for “everyday people,” not just individuals facing significant health challenges.
  • You can recruit them to help you at work (that is, of course, if you want every story you’re writing to be about bacon).
  • The dog-as-assistant plan works really well until your dog jumps to catch a squirrel out the window and you go flying backward.
  • A study this past spring found that young children who are exposed to dogs and cats are less likely to develop allergies to pets.
  • People with dogs are 34% likelier to meet federal benchmarks for physical activity.
  • You can force your dog to wear an old Santa Bear hat at Christmas!
  • Kids who read books to dogs experience gains in their reading ability.
  • Dogs can sniff out some early-stage cancers.
  • When you see two dogs cuddling you will be overwhelmed with powerful feelings of happiness and, for a split second, your life will feel totally fulfilled.

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