Dogs have been our loyal companions ever since we first domesticated wolves thousands of years ago. Almost half of all households in the US have a dog and most owners regard their beloved pet as part of their family. The relationship between people and dogs is more special than any other between humans and animals and whilst we may like to believe that dogs depend on us for their home and food, the truth is we get far more out of the arrangement. Here are six reasons why dogs are considered man’s best friend.
1. Dogs Never Judge You
No matter how you are feeling, your dog is an amazing listener who you can confide in with complete trust. Dogs can sense when you are feeling sad and are always eager to console you in times of trouble. Dogs make the best emotional support animals because they genuinely empathize and commit themselves to cheer you up when you are down. Unlike people, who might judge you, a dog has no opinion on your actions and merely wishes to help you through whatever problems you are having.
2. Dogs Love You Unconditionally
There is a funny saying that goes, “Every day try to be the person that your dog thinks you are.” Whilst this clearly is meant as a joke, there is a lot of truth to it. Our dogs genuinely love us no matter what and literally wait all day for us to come home. Anyone who owns a dog knows that as they turn the key in the front door, their dog is there to excitedly welcome them home. Dogs never get bored of us or need time alone. As long as you treat your dog like it deserves, it will be your loving companion for life.
3. Dogs are Heroic and Save People’s Lives
There are so many examples of dogs doing heroic things and saving the lives of their owners and even the lives of complete strangers. Whilst many dogs are trained to rescue people in dangerous situations, many dogs act spontaneously to help people. There are dogs who have pulled drowning children out of lakes and rivers, who have located people lost in the mountains and have dragged people out of burning buildings. Dogs are incredibly brave and when someone is in danger they put their lives on the line to help them. They are real-life heroes without capes.
4. Owning a Dog is Good for Our Health
Dog ownership is shown to have a myriad of physical and mental health benefits. Spending time with your dog is proven to significantly relieve stress and lift your mood. Dogs can help people who are suffering from depression or anxiety as well as people with autism or other issues. Taking your dog for a walk or playing with it outside is fantastic for your physical health and can help keep your heart healthy and reduce blood pressure. If you have a lively dog who loves going for long walks, you may end up walking 50 miles a week which is great exercise.
5. Dogs are Perpetually Positive
Dogs have an insatiable zest for life and this can rub off on you if you are a person who is prone to being gloomy. Dogs wake up excited and go to sleep satisfied and are only really down if you are. It is often said that if we could learn to enjoy life in the same way that a dog does then we would all be much happier. A dog’s pleasures are simple but they are infinitely enthusiastic about the things they love. They have no concept of the past or future so do not have any regrets or anxiety about the future. Dogs live purely for the present moment and we could all learn an awful lot from watching them and imitating the way they live.
6. Our Relationship with Dogs is Uniquely Reciprocal
There is an age-old debate between dog lovers and cat lovers but many people would agree that our relationship with dogs is far more reciprocal than with cats. There is one school of science that claims no cat is ever truly domesticated and that the only reason your pet cat doesn’t eat you is that it can’t. Whether this is true or not, cats are certainly more selfish than dogs, and many regard their owners as a comfy lap and expert back scratcher. Dogs return your affection with interest and the connection that we feel with our dog is unlike any other.
For thousands of years, humans and dogs have been living side by side, sharing homes, experiences, and love. Whilst there is no doubt that dogs are man’s best friend, they are such true friends that we really don’t deserve them. The bond we share with dogs goes far beyond that of animal and owner and our pet dog really is part of the family.
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