Pet Ownership Linked to Lower Stress and Loneliness During COVID-19 Pandemic

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Written By Dr. Tamal Dey
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A new study published in the journal PLOS ONE found that pet ownership is linked to lower stress levels and loneliness during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of California, Davis, looked at data from over 1,200 adults in the United States who were surveyed at three time points during the pandemic: early, middle, and late stages.

Reference: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0284101

The researchers found that pet owners had lower levels of stress and loneliness at all three-time points and that these benefits were particularly pronounced for people who were isolated or who had lost loved ones during the pandemic. The researchers also found that the quality of the owner-pet relationship was an important mediator between pet ownership and mental health. In other words, people who had a strong and positive relationship with their pets benefited more from pet ownership in terms of their mental health.

The study’s findings suggest that pet ownership can be a valuable resource for mental health during stress and isolation. If you’re struggling with your mental health, consider getting a pet. It could be the best decision you ever make.

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Here are some of the key findings of the study:

  • Pet owners had lower levels of stress and loneliness than non-pet owners.
  • The benefits of pet ownership were particularly pronounced for people who were isolated or who had lost loved ones during the pandemic.
  • The quality of the owner-pet relationship was an important mediator between pet ownership and mental health.

Additional details about the study:

  • The study was conducted online and involved 1,200 adults in the United States.
  • The participants were surveyed at three-time points: during the early, middle, and late stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The researchers used a variety of measures to assess stress, loneliness, and the quality of the owner-pet relationship.

The study’s findings are consistent with previous research on the mental health benefits of pet ownership. For example, a study published in the journal Anthrozo√∂s in 2019 found that pet owners had lower levels of anxiety and depression than non-pet owners. Another study published in the journal PLOS One in 2018 found that pet owners had lower levels of stress and loneliness than non-pet owners.

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The findings of these studies suggest that pet ownership can be a valuable resource for mental health. If you’re struggling with your mental health, consider getting a pet. It could be the best decision you ever make.

Here are some tips for getting the most out of pet ownership:

  • Choose a pet that is a good fit for your lifestyle and personality.
  • Ensure you have the time and resources to care for your pet properly.
  • Spend time with your pet every day.
  • Take your pet for walks or play games with them.
  • Train your pet to behave appropriately.
  • Take your pet to the veterinarian for regular checkups.

Following these tips can create a loving and rewarding relationship with your pet that can benefit your mental health.

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I am a pet expert dealing with Cats, Dogs, Birds, Rabbits and Aquarium fish for the last 10 years. Now it is time to share my knowledge with you. I am very passionate about sharing everything that I learned so far about pet care. Watch my Youtube channel Petfather


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