Having a cat may provide you enjoyment, companionship, and other significant benefits. But did you know that owning one can also reduce your risk of a heart attack? A ten year study on a selected number of pet owners proves that having a cat at home can lower your risk of getting a heart attack by approximately 30%.
For quite some time now, it's been known that anxiety and stress are related to incidences of heart attacks and other forms of cardiovascular diseases. A cat can help you relax and manage stress, in turn making you a less likely candidate for an infarction. Researchers say dogs probably have the same soothing effect, however there was not a total amount of evidence to make a conclusion.
Not to leave the canines out of the picture, another American based study conducted in 2005 shows that patients diagnosed with heart failure were noted to have some significant improvement in heart and lung function. It's safe to absorb those animals in general, specifically the domesticated ones, to provide a wide array of positive impact and health benefits.
Although these studies provide a new kind of intervention that is basically risk free like surgery or medications, there are still a few skeptics who believe there is no definite evidence of these findings. For instance, it's possible that cat owners in general are most likely to lead an already stress-free lifestyle or just are not easily affected by anxiety. There was no particular study on the practices of the cat owners alone so the study could not shed any light on the speculation.
Another cause for skepticism is a published journal stating that cat owners have a more likely chance to have heart attacks than dog owners. Although surprising, it also makes a lot of sense as many people are more allergic to felines than canines.
Veterinarians however, provide a more understandable reason as to why cats are more stress-relieving than their canine counterparts. Because cats are small animals, they like to be petted. Petting animals is said to not only relieve stress but also lower blood pressure.
On the other hand, since dogs are highly active and possibly larger, they need more attention and thus, leading to a more likely elevated stress level. Cats can practically take care of themselves, whereas dogs need regular exercise through daily walks and active play. It is good to note however, that a dog's active lifestyle promotes much needed exercise to their humans as well, facilitating a means for a healthy heart.