For Stress Awareness Month, PetStay is looking at the ways a dog or pet can improve your mood.

Many dog owners past and present will tell you that their dog made them happier. In fact, research now shows that our four-legged friends can help reduce stress, anxiety, depression, and loneliness among other things!

Charities such as the Mental Health Foundation have stated the health benefits as well as the mental wellbeing benefits a dog can bring to a person, saying that a pet “can be a great source of comfort, companionship, and motivation”.

Pets can have an incredibly calming effect on us just by stroking them, sitting with them and playing with them. Dogs are a great motivation to get out of the house and walk which is beneficial to your physical health as well as your mental health. Research backs the claims that dogs and pets can improve our mental and physiological health, and can even improve the social aspects of our lives.

Most recently, Sir Anthony Seldon, Vice Chancellor of the University of Buckingham, spoke about the benefits dogs can have in classrooms. Speaking at a conference held at Westminster Academy in London, Sir Anthony Seldon surged schools to consider allowing dogs in the classroom to help reduce stress in children and improve their emotional wellbeing, the BBC reported.

Seldon said that “… children can relate to animals when they are hurt and anxious and sad in a way that can’t always with human beings… the evidence is very clear that it works, and every single school – primary, secondary, special – should have dogs.”

Even if you can’t take on the full-time responsibility of a pet, there are more and more ways to get your doggy fix! Many of PetStay’s home boarding dog carers have joined us because they decided to look after guest dogs were the better alternative for them. By joining our team and offering a bespoke, home-from-home pet sitting service, PetStay’s carers can meet new people and of course, get the love and attention of a dog!

Gerri and Mike, carers with PetStay Norfolk said: Dogs just makes us smile more and feel happy. The nice people we meet who bring their dogs to us are lovely. It’s also such good exercise, dog walking. It’s amazing how many people we have met on our walks. Now we have retired it’s such a great thing to do.”

If you want to look after guest pets in your free time and enjoy the health benefits of caring for a dog get in touch and find out more about becoming a PetStay home boarding dog carer.

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