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What my dogs do for me

By Jennifer LaRue Huget
May 16, 2014

When I came back to write this blog entry, I found both my dogs – the border terrier Kitty and the Chesapeake Bay retriever Trimper – sleeping under my desk. As I approached my chair, they both thumped their tails on the floor, wagging with delight. Just because I was around. If that’s not an ego boost, I don’t know what is.

As it happens, I’d already been having a great day. It was Mother’s Day, and I’d received thoughtful gifts and cards, a new hammock to try out later this afternoon, and the promise of a spareribs-and-corn-on-the-cob dinner, with a fire in the fire-pit afterward. We took Trimper to the river to play with his duck decoy. My husband even gave me little earrings featuring the smiling face of my favorite actor, James Franco.

Lots of people do nice things for me all the time. But sometimes I think my dogs do more than anyone to keep me healthy and happy. First, there’s that tail-wagging thing. On top of that, they give me an excuse to be outside and stay active, to maintain a schedule instead of lapsing into laziness, and help connect me with other people. Just being with them makes me feel calm (well, except when they’re naughty) and relaxed.

As this article suggests, scientists have repeatedly found that having pets can confer all kinds of health benefits on humans. The list is impressive: Pet ownership can help keep kids from developing allergies and grownups from maintaining high blood pressure. Pets can ease depression and stress.

Plus, pets are just plain fun to have around.

Tell me about your pets. Do you think they help keep you healthy?

Jennifer LaRue Huget

Jennifer LaRue Huget was diagnosed with MS in 2001. A freelance writer and children’s book author, she lives in Connecticut with her husband, two teenage kids, and two brown dogs. Her website is www.jenniferlaruehuget.com.

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