Home Animals What Are the Benefits of Getting a Therapy Pet?

What Are the Benefits of Getting a Therapy Pet?


According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is estimated that one in five people in the U.S. is living with a mental illness. Now, with the COVID-19 pandemic in full swing, the American Psychological Association (APA) reports that more than 80 percent of Americans find the future of the country to be a “significant source of stress.”

Life is especially challenging for everyone right now, but it can be made even more difficult if you’re dealing with other mental health-related obstacles such as phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), relationship problems, or increased symptoms of anxiety due to COVID-19 issues. Many New Yorkers, for example, may find the close quarters of city life extra stressful at this time.

Luckily, by finding the right therapist for you out of the many New York therapists ready to help you with your particular mental health issue, you can find a psychologist to help you through whatever is troubling you. According to the Therapy Group of NYC, 80 percent of people who receive therapy sessions find it to be effective. Whether it’s increased stress due to the pandemic, an issue you’ve been avoiding for a long time, or couples therapy; the licensed professions at the Therapy Group of NYC are ready to help you begin your journey with psychotherapy.

Note: due to COVID-19, all appointments are currently online. To book your first session with a psychotherapist and to see what your insurance plan will cover for new clients, check out the Therapy Group of NYC’s website.

Generally, it’s a good idea to engage in cognitive behavior therapy with a clinical psychologist AND to find your own lifestyle techniques for handling your problems. For example, maybe consider talking to your psychologist about a therapy pet.

Check out some benefits of having a therapy pet:

Decreased Anxiety and Depression

According to the Cleveland Clinic, dogs can have positive effects on mental health. One Australian study even found that a psychiatric assistance dog decreased symptoms of anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in 94 percent of participates. It seems that dogs can give you undeniable emotional strength.

Added Exercise

According to the CDC, encouraging exercise and other “outdoor activities” is one of the health benefits of having pets. The CDC recommends 150 minutes of “moderate physical activity” every week and notes how walking (as in taking that adorable pooch for a walk) is a great way to gain the health benefits of physical activity. For the best dog no pull harness for your daily walks with your pooch, check out the best dog harness on the market at Joyride Harness.

This top pick dog harness comes in nine different colors, six different sizes, and with the option to add the safety seatbelt at a discount price for those dreaded car rides to the vet. The harness comes in a durable vest design meant to fit around a dog’s chest while giving your dog’s head and front legs plenty of room to move around. The front-clip harness has padding to prevent discomfort and simple design with a front clip that makes it super easy to put on your pooch. The harness does not come with a leash but has a strap on the back of the vest so you can hold onto your dog’s back instead of a leash if that works better for you (probably will only be an option for a larger dog). It does have two different leash attachment points on the side, which will naturally turn your dog sideways when you pull on the loose leash so you won’t put pressure on your dog’s neck or on their trachea (which will improve behavior by making them feel respected instead of choked).

Plus, with three different adjustment points, you can attach other accessories (such as poop bags, a name tag, etc.) to this versatile harness. For the perfect fit, be sure to check out Joy Ride Harness’s sizing guide for the right fit for the particular breed (it goes by weight so take that into account if you have a puppy – even smaller dogs like pugs are going to want a snug fit).

Decreased Loneliness and Healthy Distraction

Life can be hard work. This can be why a pet can be a great option to get you through the hard times. The CDC and the Cleveland Clinic both note how pets can greatly help people with feelings of loneliness. Plus, pets can provide you with a welcomed distraction when you’re having a particularly tough time and just need someone to snuggle with. For children, therapy pets can provide a welcome distraction during routine dental and physical examinations.

Helps Keep Vital Health Numbers Low

According to the CDC, studies have shown that having a pet lowers your blood pressure, cholesterol, and even your triglyceride numbers. While you should maintain a healthy diet and schedule regular doctor’s appointments, it can’t hurt to have a pooch by your side to lower overall stress!