Pets Can be Good for Your Health

May 16, 2010 by  
Filed under inspiration

By Michael Thomas Masters

In the film, Paulie (United States,1998), an intelligent and talking pet parrot (voiced by actor Jay Mohr) befriends a little girl who stutters and assists an aging and blind widow, enriching their lonely lives.  Bim, a brave and caring pet dog, in White Bim, Black Ear (Russia, 1978), fearlessly assists his human owner, even bringing the man great joy while he’s ill in a town hospital.

Of course, these are fictitious stories and films, which illustrate the emotional and healthy bonds between pets and humans.

Nonetheless, cats, dogs, birds, or any other pet, can make humans happier and healthier.   In fact, pets definitely provide special oomph to our lives!
By no means should we underestimate the power of love and devotion between pet owners and their pets, especially in regards to the positive influence that pets offer to the good mental and physical health of their humans.  Pets are genuine companions. They sense when their owners do not feel well or are unhappy.  Animals keenly feel when their humans need comfort.

For instance, a guide dog makes a blind person feel happier, since this very special kind of canine will help a sight impaired human to be more mobile to go wherever they desire, building their self confidence, spirit and positive state of mind.

While living and working in New York City, several years ago, I visited with my friend George, who is a blind actor, and his wonderful black lab guide dog, Royal.  I was impressed by Royal’s ease and comfort as she walked along the busy sidewalks of downtown Manhattan while assisting George, as well as when she sat quietly in a restaurant during dinner.
As a loyal companion and canine family member, George credited Royal in helping him through personal challenges, often by Royal just being there with her unconditional love.

Sometimes, the seemingly smallest acts of affection from pets, like when a pet curls up at the end of one’s bed, can make humans feel happier, stronger and more secure, thus creating a healthier person.  An affectionate lick from a dog, the purring from a loyal cat seated in ones lap or the lovely singing from a bird, can do wonders for our spirits and hearts.

My friend Carolyn’s husband, Bob, had heart surgery in Oregon a few years back.  Bob was feeling mighty tired, depressed and lonely after the operation.  After two adorable and inquisitive kittens, Jacques and Jill, entered their lives, Bob’s attitude and energy noticeably changed for the better. The playful kitties licked, purred and showered him with attention and love.  They made Bob forget his troubles and worries, as he grew healthier following his surgery.

It is also common knowledge that pets and animals can improve the mental and physical well being of elderly humans, especially when living alone.
In addition to becoming a valued and beloved friend, pets can become an elderly person’s lifeline.  Pets can provide valuable assistance to injured and aged humans.  In fact, pets have often saved their owners lives (of any age) by securing help for their injured or ill humans.

Of course, be aware of the size of your home, your financial situation and the size and type of the pet being considered, before welcoming any pet(s) into your home.

It is wonderful when affection, trust and devotion is shared between pets and humans, making them each happier and healthier creatures.

Michael Thomas Masters is originally from New Jersey. He is a published author, public speaker and arts administrative who presently resides in Iowa. His e-mail address:


One Response to “Pets Can be Good for Your Health”
  1. Robert says:

    Great work! I enjoyed the article.

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