Many Bollywood celebrities often take to social media to share pictures with their pets, even as many of these pets are now famous themselves – for example, Edward (Alia Bhatt’s cat); Joy (Varun Dhawan’s dog who was also mentioned in the celebrity talk show, Koffee With Karan); Buddy (Anushka Sharma’s dog); and so many others.
Similarly, actor Disha Patani also shared a picture with her dog – Bela – which she totally missed. In adorable clicks, Ek Villain Returns The actor can be seen hugging his pooch, a brown cocker spaniel, making a strong case for how pets make tough times so much easier.
Keeping a pet is a great form of emotional support for animal lovers, and as such, pet/animal-assisted therapy has gained immense popularity around the world.
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“Spending time with animals really helps to increase oxytocin and other endorphins (feel-good hormones). Cortisol, the stress hormone, is proven to decrease with pets. Of course, we only recommend it to those who are animal lovers. For them, it can really make a difference and act as a real source of comfort,” Dr Rachna Khanna Singh, mental wellness specialist at Artemis Hospital told indianexpress.com.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, animal-assisted therapy is defined as “regular interactions with animals for a set amount of time over weeks or months”. It is specifically used in retirement centers to help people living with depression. It is also an incredible source of healing for people dealing with traumatic events and the after-effects of PTSD. Animals do not have preconceived notions about people, so it is usually easy and liberating for a person to spend time with them.
In addition to emotional and mental benefits, pet therapy can also have physical benefits. According to the National Library of Medicine, “Epidemiological studies suggest that pet owners can reap physical benefits, such as improved blood pressure and greater physical activity.”
“Patients who have pets who were released from a coronary care unit were significantly more likely to survive one year later,” says one study.
“The relationship between humans and animals is prehistoric. Pet therapy can be considered one of the most useful non-pharmacological techniques of management for the elderly, those suffering from diseases such as dementia and depression, and even Others who have an affinity for animals,” concluded Vinay Gor, founder and chief psychologist, Atman, Psychology Studios Pune.
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