Owning a dog will cut your risk of death by 24%
Want another excuse to add a puppy to your family? How about living longer?
According to doctors at Mount Sinai, having a dog will increase your life by 24 per cent.
"Our analysis found having a dog is actually protective against dying of any cause," said endocrinologist Dr. Caroline Kramer, "Dog ownership was associated with a 24% reduction in all-cause mortality."
He review of the health benefits of having a pupper in your life analysed research involving 4 million people in the United States, Canada, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Australia and the UK.
The analysis found that there’s an even bigger benefit for people who have had a heart attack or a stroke.
"For those people, having a dog was even more beneficial. They had a 31% reduced risk of dying from cardiovascular disease," Kramer said.
Another study, published in Circulation magazine, found that people who owned dogs had better health outcomes after suffering heart attacks and strokes.
However, the greatest benefit was for dog owners who lived alone.
"The most interesting part of this study was that people who lived alone actually seem to get the greatest benefit in both the heart attack group and the stroke group," said Dr. Martha Gulati, "People who lived with a dog actually had less mortality than people living alone who didn't have a dog," said Gulati, who was not involved in either study.
There’s a variety of reasons why owning a dog might help you live longer. The study mentions everything from regular walks (providing dog-owners significantly more exercise than non-dog-owners), to regular petting (which appears to reduce blood pressure as much as education.
Are we in a world where soon we’ll see doctors prescribe dogs for their patients? Maybe.