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Can Your Pet Help Your Brain?



Did you know that petting your furry loved one has an impact on your brain activity? When you pet your fur baby your brain activity actually increases!

Why might this be important to us?

You most likely have heard that caressing an animal releases oxytocin, the hormone associated with feelings of love, bonding, and social connection, which helps to reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood, and can lower blood pressure. This piece of information may not be new to you; however, this next piece may be new.

One of the lesser known benefits of petting an animal is that it can help improve cognitive function. It's the prefrontal cortex in the brain that gets activated. This is the part of the brain that's involved with thinking, learning, emotions and problem-solving. It seems that repeatedly petting an animal increases brain activity even more. In fact, studies with elderly individuals who interacted with animals on a regular basis showed improvements in memory, attention, and problem-solving abilities. This suggests that spending time with animals may help keep our brains sharp and improve overall cognitive health.

Regardless of your age, think about this for a moment.

Having sharp cognitive health can improve performance of our daily tasks. This could include work-related tasks, as well as activities like driving, cooking, and managing finances. Additionally, individuals become better equipped to handle complex tasks, make quick decisions, and adapt to changing circumstances. We ALL can benefit from these!

So whether the furry ones around you are pups, kitties, rabbits, gerbils, chinchillas or any other pets, they can help keep your brain active and sharp at every age…as long as you pet them regularly! I'm sure the animal recipient will appreciate it too!


If you'd like to discover more ways the connection with your pet can help you, schedule a Fur Baby Speaks experience!

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