National Dog’s Day Tribute
There are many reasons to dedicate a day to recognize our so-called “best friends”. The unconditional love, dedication, and joy they bring to our lives are the most important ones. Having a National Dog’s Day Tribute just doesn’t seem to be enough for all the positive things they bring into our lives.
Short or tall, skinny or fat, old or young, rich or poor, healthy or infirm…..you get the picture. They love us just as we are without judgment. Our furry best friends are there for us no matter what mood we are in as well. They are ready to romp and play if we are so inclined or to sit quietly at our side if that is what we need. They adapt to our physical and emotional needs with uncanny precision.
There is scientific research that documents that dogs can read our emotions and respond appropriately. This is evidence that they can interpret our feelings and act accordingly based on how we’re feeling. How amazing is that? That alone is enough to have a National Dog’s Day!
Below is a brief list of ways that our canine companions help to make us healthier and happier people.
- They love us for who we are and they know how to show it.
- Our furry friends consider us family. We may include them in our family portrait or Christmas card and even announce it on FaceBook. But, studies have demonstrated that dogs feel the same way. Researchers examined canine brain scans of canines and found that they see us as part of their tribe and rely on us more than their own breed for affection and protection.
Some Recent Research Proves It
They can read our facial expressions and body movements. Dogs can tell if we’re happy, sad or angry by reading our faces, according to a 2015 study published in the journal Current Biology.
- Dogs can help reduce anxiety. Aren’t you automatically happier when your favorite canine companion is around? Don’t you feel yourself relaxing a bit while you stroke behind his ear? Research actually shows that we as humans are actually happier when we are around our dogs. The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that owning a pet makes people happier overall. One research project done at Georgia State University said determined that dogs reduce the feeling of stress and loneliness in college students. There are no nasty side effects of having a dog to treat your anxiety either!
- Research shows that exposure to the microbes in our dogs may help build a stronger immune system and, thus, make us healthier.
- Dog ownership provides benefits more than just on an emotional level. Studies show that our canine companions also improve our physical well-being. Dogs have such a sensitive olfactory sense (ability to smell) that they can detect medical problems often before we can. Some dogs can detect certain types of cancer in humans. I will soon be sharing a story of a dear friend whose dog alerted her to breast cancer that was not suspected. This early pick up helped to save her life. Dogs have demonstrated the ability to sniff out something you’re allergic to if it is nearby. They also can be trained to pick up on falling blood sugar and to help assist when you’re having a seizure. Therapy dogs offer many benefits to their human companions beyond love and devotion.
Dogs Help To Heal and Provide Therapy
- Dogs help us heal from many types of injuries, both physical and emotional. Hey do more than comfort us in our daily lives, they also relieve the stress for those suffering traumatic situations. Therapy dogs are often used for catastrophic events. Veterans returning home from a combat zone or a civilian who survived a mass shooting or natural disaster may have PTSD. It has been shown that specially-trained dogs can help ease PTSD.
- Dogs and humans have a natural bond with one another. This is likely due to a hormone we produce in our bodies called Oxytocin. This hormone is known as the “love hormone” and it is released when we cuddle with humans or canines. It has been thought to cause dogs to pay better attention to their humans. Maybe this is why cuddling up causes a stronger relationship whether it is between people or between people and dogs.
On a less positive note….
- Dogs get jealous, too, according to one study conducted by the University of California, San Diego. This study found that dogs showed signs of jealousy when they saw their owners engaging with a stuffed dog. We have all heard stories of one dog being jealous of another dog or even of another human. The green-eyed monster of envy is not restricted to the human race. It also afflicts our canine companions.
Nevertheless, the National Dog’s Day Tribute Is Well Deserved
Our furry family members bring us such joy with their unconditional love and constant devotion that they deserve to be recognized. They would probably appreciate an extra hug, tummy scratching or yummy treat more than a day on the calendar. There is no reason they cannot have both.
Some photos from Pixabay