Cats have been a favored pet of humans since the times of ancient Egypt. In fact, Egyptians saw cats as more than simple pets. Egyptians placed cats in a place of high regard and would even have them mummified so their spirit could join them in the afterlife.
Mankind’s love of these purring, furry felines has spanned almost the entirety of our existence. Our extensive affection for cats may have more to do with their ability to brighten our lives and improve our health, although we may not be aware of it.
Cat Ownership Lowers Blood Pressure
Cats have a natural calming presence for those whom they adore. When an otherwise boisterous and rowdy person is introduced to a cat, their entire demeanor changes. They become more calm and affectionate. This calming effect also helps to reduce blood pressure which is adversely affected by agitation or boisterousness.
Cat Ownership Helps Relieve Anxiety
It is well documented that animals can help people suffering from severe anxiety disorders. Petting or being in the presence of a cat can trigger the release of oxytocin which is considered the love hormone. This release of oxytocin will have an immediate calming effect on someone suffering from an anxiety attack. Also, cats can be registered as Emotional Support Animals for those suffering from psychological or emotional disorders such as anxiety.
Cat Ownership Reduces Chances of Heart Attack and Stroke
A study was conducted which looked at 4,435 adults, only half of which owned a cat. The results of this study showed that only 3.4% of cat owners died from a heart attack or stroke during the course of 10 years. The group of non-cat owners was also examined after 10 years and 5.8% of them had died from a heart attack or stroke.
Based on these results, it was concluded that cat ownership helped to reduce the chances of dying from a stroke or heart attack. It is believed that this is due to the fact that cats are able to help reduce our stress which is a major contributing factor to heart disease.
The list of health benefits gifted to us by our loving feline friends is much more extensive. If you would like to take a deeper look into all of the ways that your life could benefit from owning a cat, there are many resources available to you online or at your local library. If you are already a cat owner, be sure to give your fluffball a big hug and a kiss to thank them for being such a gracious friend.