Today I’m going to discuss one of my favorite things in the whole wide world, dogs! Also known as “man’s best friend” and for very good reason, I want to share with you how having a dog has dramatically helped my anxiety & depression.
(And don’t worry! If you’re not a fan of dogs other pets can bring you much joy and happiness too like cats, lizards, etcetera.)
I have raised my Harvey since he was 6 weeks old and I want to share with you what he has taught me about a dogs love.
1. Dogs love unconditionally. It doesn’t matter how much money you have or how you look, your dog is going to love you for you no matter what.
2. It’s a celebration every time you come home, even if you were only gone 30 minutes. There is no feeling greater than a dog literally throwing a party because you simply walked through the door. They always let you know that you are loved, wanted, needed, and missed.
3. They are extremely forgiving. Have you ever gotten in an argument with a friend and not spoke again for a while? That’s not the case with a dog. Sometimes we come home ill and frustrated, and unfortunately sometimes we raise our voice. It hurts their feelings because dogs live to impress you, but they forgive you just as fast- just make sure you apologize. A dog will never abandon you, you are their whole world… that and food haha!
4. Dogs can sense sadness. My depression is BAD, when I’m having one of those days my dogs know; when I cry they either cuddle me or smother me with sweet puppy kisses.
5. They are protectors. When you raise a dog they form an unbreakable bond with you, you become part of their pack. If you live alone or are home alone a lot, dogs can give you a sense of security and calmness.
So how can a dog help your depression anxiety? Let’s recap!
• They will love you forever and ever. You become the most important person in their life, they literally live to be with you, therefore you are very much wanted and loved.
• No matter the situation they will never want to leave you. If you get fired from work, they’ll still love you! If you wake up with bed head and blemishes all over your face, they will still love you! If you’re having a bad day and your mood is sour, they will love you and most likely even try to comfort you.
• They can help you feel security if you have high anxiety. Whenever I’m alone I always know my Harvey is going to protect me. They are going to know someone’s at your house before the doorbell even rings; additionally their barking will warn people that “this is not the house you want to try and break into!”
So to sum everything up, do I believe dogs have the power to lift some of your depression and anxiety? Absolutely! I don’t know where I’d be without my babies, they are my best friends. I would love to hear stories in the comments about your dogs and how they have helped you.
FYI: Having a pet does take training especially for puppies but don’t give up on them, they’re worth it. Look at it this way, it keeps your mind occupied instead of dwelling on other things. If you’d be interested in a blog post on how to take care of a new puppy let me know! And feel free any time to reach out if you have questions.