How Pets Help Combat Depression

If you’re one of the more than 300 million people in the world who struggles with depression, you know how challenging the symptoms can be. Feeling constantly sad, lonely or even worthless takes a significant toll on you and leaves you drained. Some days, you might not want to get out of bed or leave the house. Many mental health specialists recommend adopting a pet to help stave off depressive episodes. Here are the top benefits of bringing a pet into your life.

Unconditional Love

Pets will always be happy to see you at the end of a long day, no matter what. Your pet is your only friend who will never judge you and will be there to accept you regardless of your perceived flaws or shortcomings. You can tell your pet anything and never have to worry about hearing a response that makes you feel uncomfortable. Spending time with a pet can also be a helpful break from negative self-talk. It’s hard to dwell on depressive feelings when you look into your pet’s eyes and only see love and affection reflecting back at you.

Personal Responsibility

Bringing a pet into your life entails accepting a great deal of responsibility. When another living creature depends on you for their health, happiness and well-being, it can help you reinforce to yourself that you are capable of caring for others. Taking care of a pet also provides structure in your life. For example, staying in bed all day isn’t an option if you have a dog who needs to go outside for potty breaks. Caring for a dog will also require you to get more exercise in the form of going on walks or jogs with your four-legged friend – and regular workouts are a natural mood-booster.

Improved Health

Touch has indisputable healing powers, and cuddling with a pet is no exception. When a cat curls up in your lap and starts purring, or a dog nudges your hand to ask for belly rubs, it naturally makes you feel good. Stroking your cat or dog and watching their eyes close in sheer bliss can lower blood pressure and heart rate. Research shows petting a dog for only 15 minutes can decrease your blood pressure by as much as 10 percent.

Find Your Way to Peace of Mind

At Canyon Crossing, our mission is to empower women to live with integrity and grace. We work to show all our clients that recovering from drug and alcohol dependency is not only possible, but well worth pursuing. To seek qualified help for yourself or someone you care about, contact us today.

Benefits of Residential AddictionTreatment

You cannot heal in the same environment that made you sick. This is the philosophy behind our residential addiction treatment program. At Canyon Crossing, women learn to live life on life’s terms while staying in a safe, substance-free setting. This gives our clients the space and peace needed for lasting recovery.
Our residential program combines high-accountability sober living arrangements with first-rate clinical care. While staying in our homes, clients participate in process groups, one-on-one counseling sessions, and hands-on learning opportunities. They also receive ongoing training; in these meetings, life skills like financial management and conflict resolution are imparted. All of this happens with 24/7 encouragement, guidance, and supervision from our clinical team.
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