– Hello, I’m Emma Hammett
from FirstAidForPets.net, and today I’m going to talk
to you about the major health, physical, mental health benefits, wellness and wellbeing benefits
of being a pet owner. I think we all know, but
actually it’s quite nice to know that there’s been
studies to back this up, and that the benefits
have been documented. Particularly in older people. It’s thought that the extent
of, the benefit to the NHS, could be of the order of
2.45 billion pounds a year. Pet owners have a reduction
in the amount of sickness they experience and a
greater feeling of wellbeing. So, it’s good to know. So last week we talked about the pitfalls, if you like, or the things to think about if you’re getting a pet
for an older person. So, how to choose a pet
that is likely to fit in with their lifestyle, how
to make it easier for them to look after their pet,
and how to make sure it’s a really good benefit,
a benefit to both the pet and to the older person. And this week we’re just
looking at the mental and physical health side of things. So, pets have been proven to
reduce your blood pressure, reduce your anxiety, and
the RSPCA have done a study that shows that it massively
increases the mobility of older people, and it’s not
just getting up and having to take them out for a walk, taking the pet out for a
walk, it’s doing things for someone else, so it’s
that feeling of empowerment, and caring and reason that raison d’etre for life, to actually
look after another being, who’s dependent on you. So it gives you a real
sense of worth as well, which makes a big difference. Interestingly as well,
the Society for Companion Animal Studies has shown
that dog ownership, in particular, has been
shown to reduce the cardiovascular dementia risk. So that is good to know,
and in addition to this, various other studies
have shown that actually if you’ve got someone
who’s incredibly distressed with Alzheimer’s, that
actually if they’re a pet owner it’s been shown to reduce
their verbal aggression and reduce the amount of anxiety
that they’re experiencing, if they have Alzheimer’s. And it does of course
reduce isolation, as well. So not only because you’ve
got a pet and someone in your own home, and
someone that cares for you, and will come and, come for affection, the cat might curl up on
their lap, but also it gives a reason for other people
to maybe interact more with the pet, and then with
the older person as well. So it breaks down those
isolation barriers. So, pet ownership is a good thing. And, so please share
this, and also have a look at last week’s Facebook Live that we did, and the blog on our site,
with a lot of really good, serious tips and practical
advice on helping an older person to
choose a pet, look after or continue to look after their pet, and lots of things that
can just make it that much easier for them. And, so it’s a really great existence both for the pet and for the human. That’s Emma Hammett
for FistAidForPets.net.