The Health Benefits of Animals
One of the benefits of animals in and around your personal life is that they promote better mental health. Many pets, especially dogs have a positive effect on their owners, providing demand free relationships that are based on care, respect and trust.
This article is a very positive look at the effect of pets on the human psyche. It explores the relationship one lady has with her dog and the soothing effect that simple reminders of its presence has on her. Further into the piece it takes an interesting look at the brain chemistry behind our relationships with pets.
At the beginning of the article the author talks about when she felt despairing and lost following a day’s diving. Unable to drive, she laid down on the dog blanket in the car and inhaled the scent the scent of her border collie. Inhaling this scent triggered associations which have an emotional impact through a conditioned response.
As she breathes in the dogs scent she is also mindfully slowing down her breathing and this is changing her autonomic nervous system. In a sense this is the fake it till you make it psychology works as by helping your body go through the physical motions of calmness you are actually bringing a decreased level of anxiety and tension into the frame. Couple this with the automatic response previously discussed and you begin to understand the power of this emotional relationship and bond.
Certain dogs that have a very strong presence and are skilled at guarding and protecting their companions can make their owners feel very calm. There is almost a trigger associated with their smell that can help reassure and promote confidence. This natural bond has existed between man and dogs for many thousands of years.
There is also a definite mindfulness aspect to having dogs. Sitting with our pets and feeling a genuine, loving response from these animals often helps us live in the moment and experience unconditional affection. Many people form closer relationships with their dogs than their partners or even in extreme cases their children. This is often due to the uncomplicated and judgement free nature of the bond between dog and owner.
People who have dogs as pets are generally happier and are well adjusted to the stresses and strains of real life. There is a definite therapeutic benefit to living with animals, with some doctors even suggesting that dogs and puppies can be useful to cancer sufferers helping remove the pressure and despair from the darkest days.
If you would like to find out how your life could be made better with or without the introduction of a dog into your life, why not make an appointment for a free consultation session where we can talk through your current situation. This should determine whether or not hypnotherapy can help you meet your life’s challenges or if you would benefit from owning a dog.