Bark for heart health

14 May

dogs final“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”
Josh Billings

 

We’ve known for a while that dog owners are more likely to be fitter humans, however we’ve never seen it as a prescriptive antidote for chronic diseases, like heart health…until now.  The U.S.’s largest cardiovascular association, the American Heart Association (AHA), published a scientific consensus last week, after years of data and discussion about the cardiovascular effects of pet ownership.  The group concluded that owning a dog, in particular, was “probably associated” with a reduced risk of heart disease. “Probably” in the land of research speaks volumes.

“We didn’t want to make this too strong of a statement,” said Dr. Glenn Levine, a professor at the Baylor College of Medicine and head of the committee that provided the message. “But there are plausible psychological, sociological and physiological reasons to believe that pet ownership might actually have a causal role in decreasing cardiovascular risk.” “Several studies showed that dogs decreased the body’s reaction to stress, with a decrease in heart rate, blood pressure and adrenaline-like hormone release when a pet is present as opposed to when a pet is not present,” Dr. Levine said.

Source: O’Connor, A. Heart Disease and Dogs. NY Times. Published 9 May 2013.

 flynn halibut state park

flynn halibut state park 2

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2 Responses to “Bark for heart health”

  1. maureen May 14, 2013 at 8:27 pm #

    How nice to see Flynn featured in a health article!

  2. Mark Amendola, PhD May 14, 2013 at 9:49 pm #

    Leslie – Great pic’s of Flynn. Good article. I know I am more relaxed when Cooper is curled up next to me as he is now. Now if I could just take him to work.

    Hope all is well with you. Talked to your mom and I know she is anxious to have the kitchen finished. I am sure it will look very nice. We are anxious to see it.

    Mark

    Mark L. Amendola, PhD

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