A few thoughts on pets and stress

Whenever I get stressed, I talk about my problem. I talk to my other half, friends, family, strangers even. I talk and I talk and I talk. I don’t necessarily want a solution, just a sympathetic ear.

In contrast, my other half retreats and, now that we’ve got one, strokes the dog. I have to say, our dog is just brilliant for relieving stress at the end of a hectic day. At around 8pm every night Louis (our dog) collapses in a sleepy heap next to us and snores happily until bedtime. And in those final hours of the day, we relax by stroking his furry tummy and silky ears. It’s a wonderfully calming way to prepare for sleep.

Research shows that owning a pet can really help to reduce stress – a major cause of sleepless nights – and I can believe it. As well as performing the role of living teddy bear and hot water bottle, Louis makes me smile many times every day – when he bounds up to greet me, when he chases his ball and even when he scampers off with a misplaced sock! Don’t get me wrong, it is hard work at times, but the joy he brings us certainly outweighs the odd bit of naughtiness.

So, here’s to you Louis – for keeping me smiling and my other half sane and sleeping soundly!

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