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The Importance of Dogs – Millennials
The importance of companion animals has been revealed as an important aspect in those emerging into adulthood.
“In a recent paper produced by the Canadian Journal of Family and Youth pet ownership has been investigated to see the link between offering stability to young adults as they leave home,” Nadia Crighton from Pet Insurance Australia says. “This research has shown that owning a dog in the early stages of adulthood can provide healthy development and help with routines and responsibility.”
The reached showed that owning a pet during this age bracket can help provide a stable routine, shift the focus from the ‘self’ and even influence the type of people millennials choose to spend their time with.
“The other important aspect is also being able to facilitate this shift,” Crighton adds. “Sadly, many millennials simply cannot afford their education, their rent, or a pet. Making it much more difficult for them to be able to enjoy all the benefits that pet ownership can bring.”
Based on a US survey, college students believed that having a pet at home also reduced loneliness and allowed them a feeling of companionship during difficult times. With the rise in stress and periods of isolation during the COVID-19 outbreak, the desire to own a pet is higher than ever.
Most emerging adults leaving home are primarily looking for rental accommodation. The bans and bylaws that exist certainly punish this age bracket more than any other when it comes to pet ownership.
“I think it’s important for many parents and families to understand how important pet ownership is and to help facilitate this adjustment into adulthood as much as possible,” Crighton says. “The move to allow more accommodation that is also pet friendly is certainly a step in the right direction that can help many emerging adults own and enjoy a pet.”
Having a pet can help young adults shift the focus from themselves that can help produce healthy habits and a focus on the direction of their life. The research from the Canadian Journal of Family and Youth showed participants in the study reported leaving parties earlier, and even overcoming gaming addictions while increasing in physical activities.
“I think parents watching their children leave the nest would have a good feeling of this type of research, and possibly encourage their children to invest in pet ownership sooner, and even feasibly help,” Crighton says.
Interestingly pet insurance has also shown to help millennials feel more in control and less worried about the future health of their pets.
“Understandably, for many emerging adults the pressure of balancing money can be huge,” Crighton says. “Being able to provide good veterinary care is basic for any pet owner, having pet insurance offered a sense of relief for those millennials who had active policies for their pets.”
Pet ownership has been shown over and over again to bring so many benefits to all age brackets.
“Many studies have proven that interacting with animals has been shown to decrease levels of cortisol and lower blood pressure,” Crighton says. “While others have found that having a pet around can reduce the feeling of loneliness and help you feel good. I think this research is so important to really understand how having a pet when you first leave home, can have a huge impact on your life. Allowing families to help facilitate this transition and encourage pet ownership can possibly have a huge effect on the level of wellbeing through the adjustment period into adulthood.”
Some additional benefits of pet ownership include;
- Reduce stress
- Reduce blood pressure
- Reduce anxiety and depression
- Increasing social skills
- Increasing self-esteem
- Increasing communication skills
- Increasing motor skills
- Encourages movement and stretching
- Decreasing boredom
- Decreases feelings of isolation and aloneness
Photo by Helena Lopes