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How Dogs Can Improve the Lives of People Living with a Mental Illness

When people living with a mental illness were asked what helped them manage their conditions, many listed their pets. In fact, 80 percent of participants said their pets were a crucial part of their support network. There are many ways pets can help people to live mentally healthier lives. The study found that pets were beneficial in helping people to exercise and develop routines. Pets also offered a distraction, reduced the social stigma of mental illness, and provided and a sense of control, safety, and stability. Companionship, Comfort, and Support Networks The companionship that a pet offers is a great way to reduce stress and anxiety, as pets can have calming effects on their owners. J

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© 2016 by Lee Charles Kelley.