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12 Ways Pets Improve Your Health

It's no secret that pets make you feel good. Here, 12 ways they make a real impact on your mental and physical wellbeing.
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How pets make you happier and healthier

by Celia Shatzman

When you come home to a purr or wagging tail at the end of a stressful day, the sudden wave of calm you feel isn't just your imagination. Research suggests that your fluffy friend truly is good for your physical and mental health. "Pets often provide unconditional acceptance and love and they're always there for you," says Gary A. Christenson, MD, chief medical officer at Boynton Health Service at the University of Minnesota. "There is a bond and companionship that makes a big difference in mental health," not to mention the extra exercise you get from walks and playtime. Read on to learn the surprising ways your pet can boost your health.

Next: Pets may lower your cholesterol

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