Pet ownership, especially that of a dog, is associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD), says a new study.
According to Hemant Madan, Director Cardiology, Narayana Superspeciality Hospital in Gurugram, it is a well-observed fact that pet owners tend to have a lower incidence of heart disease.
"This is due to several reasons such as lower blood pressure, a better exercise schedule and a lower cholesterol level. Moreover, even after a cardiac event, the calming effect of a pet leads to better recovery and rehabilitation," Madan told IANS.
"People who owned a pet were likely to report more physical activity, better diet and blood sugar at ideal levels. The greatest benefits from having a pet were for those who owned a dog," said Andrea Maugeri, Professor at the University of Catania in Italy.
The study, published in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings, looked at 1 769 subjects from Czech Republic with no history of heart disease. Researchers scored them on seven parametres - body mass index, diet, physical activity, smoking status, blood pressure, blood glucose and total cholesterol.