A day’s work ends not at “quitting time.” After a hard day’s work, one cannot just rush home and immediately sit back on the sofa with feet raised. After long hours of paper sorting, tedious analysis and hours more of report writing, the average worker cannot simply relax knowing that there are are still more things to done in the house. Eight hours at the office is followed by more domestic tasks such as cleaning the living room, washing the dishes, or doing the laundry. Being at home is just like doing another work shift, but this time, without the need to wear that tie or long-heeled pair of Prada.
There is, however, a great consolation to doing housework. Unlike being in the office, doing more work at home allows one to enjoy the benefits of being in the company of loved ones. As a bonus, a pet lover can also enjoy being with a congenial companion that helps one get over all the stress and anxiety at the office. Having a pet, like having a family, can be a real stress-buster.
Medical studies show that petting an animal can act as anxiety relief. Having a pet helps lower blood pressure and soothes the emotions after a hectic day. The company of pets gives a person a state of serenity and relaxation. Endorphins, the human hormone that kills pain, are easier released when a person enjoys the company of a pet animal. Other research clearly prove that petting a dog can help reduce stress and anxiety. The act of petting is not only comforting to the dog but for the owner as well.
Studies also say that dolphin vocalizations, or the sound being produced by these continental shelf dwellers, act as anxiety relief which can also lower blood pressures and induce calm thoughts. These specialized dolphin organs located below their blow-holes can treat mild depression, psychological problems, and developmental disabilities. These carnivorous mammals that actually feed on squid and fish are not your usual household pets. Still, they are used to conduct studies on animal-assisted therapy for human beings. Dolphin vocalizations are now being fused to classical music to produce mind-relaxing audio in CD and DVD forms.
Bird songs are also natural anxiety relief as those sounds bring incomparable sense of calm to the listener. Listening to the chirping birds can also relieve one’s mind from stress and anxiety. Psychiatrists and behavioral experts point out that petting such animals or listening to their natural sounds can be an effective way to promote emotional health and physical rejuvenation.
However, there are still some quarters that criticize the effectiveness of animal-assisted therapy. They say that therapy using animals are not as effective as taking anxiety medications. They contend that “there is still no compelling scientific evidence that proves that animal-assisted therapy is a legitimate therapy or just an answer to a fleeting mood.”
Science may not yet hold concrete proof of the benefits of animal-assisted therapy. But it is important to know that millions have already benefited emotionally and physically by having a pet as a companion. Still, no matter how tedious and tiring your office day was, having a relaxed moment with your family and pets should be considered as an alternative “therapeutic” method to promote one’s health.