International Dog Day — How Dogs Make Humans Happy

By Ashritha Raghavendra

August 24, 2022

International Dog Day

This day was founded by animal welfare advocate Collen Paige in 2004. The day aims to celebrate dogs, encourage adoption, and create awareness about better care. 

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Feel the Love

Petting a dog releases oxytocin — ‘the love hormone’ — which makes you feel warm and fuzzy. This hormone reduces stress and anxiety by enhancing relaxation, trust, and empathy.

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Healing Walks

Studies show that heart patients with dogs tend to live longer than those without. Regular walks with dogs increase physical activity which in turn reduces cholesterol levels and hypertension.

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Mindful Masters

Petting a dog can be an anchor to the present — it brings our attention to the moment. This makes us more mindful, helping us feel calm and enabled let go of our worries.

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While therapy dogs may not be trained like service dogs, they reduce stress with their caring and compassionate personality. They bring comfort to stressed college students and patients in nursing homes and hospitals.

Therapy Dogs

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Stress Busters

The University of British Columbia provided students with therapy dogs. Students reported a significant drop in their stress levels and felt happier and more energetic after petting dogs. 

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Benefits of Therapy Dogs in Schools

↓ anxiety & depression ↓ stress ↑ social skills ↑ confidence & motivation

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Fun Facts About Dogs

- Dogs can be trained to sniff medical problems. - Dogs don’t sweat. They pant to cool down their body.  - Dogs have three eyelids. The third eyelid protects & lubricates the eyes.