Heart’s Best Friend

Yes, Fido, you really are your owners’ best friend — at least when it comes to their heart health.

The American Heart Association recently made it official, publishing a scientific statement in its journal, Circulation, which reveals good research suggesting pet ownership appears to be beneficial in reducing stress, blood pressure and improving cardiovascular function and reducing obesity. The AHA noted that dogs appear to be the most beneficial pet to own because of the health benefits derived from walking them.

Still, the AHA cautions that even with all the benefits that appear to be associated with pet ownership and heart health, it’s not reason enough to adopt, rescue or buy a dog or any other pet. Pets take love, money and time to nurture and it’s best to carefully consider whether you and your family are up to the task before taking one into your home.