Healthspan

Does owning a pet support healthspan?

Dr Frank Lipman
Dec 20, 2022

Could your love for your furry family members grow even more? Research suggests that dog companionship is associated with improved health outcomes.

Study Summary

Recently, research including 11,000+ older Japanese men showed that individuals who owned a dog were at a 50% lower risk of disability compare to those who have never owned a dog.

Recent research has also shown that long-term dog owners have a 24% lower risk for all-cause mortality and a 31% decreased risk for cardiovascular-related death, compared to those who don't own dogs. Despite this study, there are still mixed outcomes on dog ownership, heart health and lifespan.

The Hearty Take

At Hearty, we believe that dog ownership likely increases physical activity, socialization and companionship, and decreases stress – all of which are related to improvements in healthspan. It’s important to note that the impact of dog ownership on healthspan could be due to other factors and behaviors that are common amongst dog owners, rather than owning a dog itself. If you own a dog, long-term ownership likely has the greatest benefits. If you don’t, spending time with dogs also appears to confer benefits!

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