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ART HADDAWAY/Owasso Reporter

How can adopting a pet benefit me during social distancing?

Every year approximately 1.5 million pets are euthanized in shelters, more often than not because the resources simply aren’t available to help them. There are so many benefits to adopting a pet and making it a part of your family.

During this time of social distancing and lockdown, having a pet can be a valuable part of keeping stress levels down. Spending time with your pet reduces cortisol levels, the stress hormone, and increases serotonin, which is the feel good chemical in our bodies. Pets provide emotional support, they are always excited to see you and enjoy spending time with you. You can tell them how you are feeling and rest assured they are not going to tell anyone else about your conversations.

Pets boost our immune systems, helping us to stay healthy and spend less time getting over viruses. Taking your dog for a walk will increase your bodies heart health and burn some of those COVID snacking calories.

The bottom line is pets have a way of filling a hole in our hearts we never even knew we had. So often the furry family member you set out to rescue, ends up rescuing you and you can’t imagine a life before they came along.

Still on the fence about adopting? Give fostering a try. You can give a pet a much needed place to stay and learn all about them without the concern of a long term commitment. In the end, the life you save may be your own.