Connecting with Animals for Your Mental Health

10/12/2018

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'Man's (and woman’s) best friend, an expression frequently used to describe the connection between a pet and their owner - and it couldn't be more accurate.

Historically, we've relied on animals as hunters and protectors, and while the wonders of modern life have meant we now have supermarkets for food and electronic security systems to keep us safe, we still keep animals around. Why?

Love and Companionship

Animals show unconditional love, loyalty and companionship towards their humans counterparts, something that is essential for good mental wellbeing. Connecting with animals is scientifically proven to reduce stress and increase feeling of happiness, and those who own a pet are more active and engaged with their local communities.

So if you’re thinking of picking up a new hobby or activity, why not think about doing something with your pet!

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And if you’re not a pet owner, don’t fret as we have a few ideas for you:

  • Offer to house-sit for friends with pets when then go on holiday, or offer to temporarily have their pet come for a stay with you
  • Volunteer at an animal shelter
  • Offer to walk your neighbour’s dog
  • Go for a horse ride
  • Visit a petting farm
  • Go for a walk in your local dog exercise area (guaranteed to see a few happy faces)

Additionally, a few of our partners do wonderful work with animals, including Saving Animals from Euthanasia (SAFE), the Rockingham Regional Environment Centre, the Bull Terrier Association WA and Gwandalan Equine Coaching. Check them out!

If you'd like some help to find the right activity for you and your pet, or to get involved with animals in your community, send us an email at info@actbelongcommit.org.au.

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