Friday, February 13, 2009

Furry Valentines Are Good For Your Heart
Your guide dog can make your heart feel warm and fuzzy. But did you know just how good your dog is for your heart and health? These four-footed cupids bestow health benefits you may not be aware of:
  • According to the Harvard Health Letter the unconditional attention that companion animals give their owners causes lowered blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety levels.
  • The University of California at Los Angeles reported that pet-owning patients had fewer medical care visits than pet-less patients.
  • Lower levels of blood cholesterol and triglycerides showed up in patients with pets in a study conducted by Australia's Baker Medical Research Institute.
  • People with service dogs and confined to a wheelchair were found to be less depressed, need less attention from caregivers, and were more mobile than people without dogs, as reported by The State University of New York in Buffalo.

Have you noticed ways that your guide dog has improved your health, well-being and outlook on life? Post your comments. We'd love to hear from you.


Jessie and Heartsong said...

It was interesting to note this article, as Heartsong is an all-aspect motivational guide dog. He gives unconditional love to anyone who befriends him (yes, I'm guilty of allowing him to be petted on the job! LOL). This is why I refer to him as a girl magnet, though guess who ends up winning their heart? He is also a good alternative to the treadmill. He loves his walks, and occasional romp in open fields. Heartsong is full of life, he's very deserving of the things we spoil him with!

Anonymous said...

Yes, our dogs definitely have a positive affect on our health, well-being and outlook on life. And I agree with the previous blogger; my beautiful Cleo brings joy to many other people. Whether I let others pat her or not depends on how well she is working on any given day, but people spark up when they see her. At the mall, she starts conversation, and the tone is happy. When I’m in a meeting, even glum people seem to cheer up when they notice her.

Physically, I’m healthier because I get out and exercise more with Cleo. A cane doesn’t give you a good morning workout, but walking a couple of miles with Cleo does.

Shirley Tracy (and Cleo)

Jessie and Heartsong said...

After looking over the newsletter, there's another thing I'd like to add - Congratulations to Marisa Gerlach on her promotion to becoming a trainer! I found she has the potential and motivation to be an excellent trainer while assisting Heidi Illgen during my training at SEGD. I wish her the best of luck and hope she aims for a career in leading the organization someday. Good work Marisa!