10th May 2021 is the beginning of Mental Health Awareness Week – and as a matter close to our hearts here at Digs for Dogs, we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to celebrate our four-legged friends, who for many of us have been the ones to keep us going this past year.
“Our dogs have made us grab for our coat instead of the duvet, and offered companionship when we’ve felt alone.”
Our furry friends, whether our own or not, benefit us in a variety of ways. They can change lives, be our best friends, confidants, motivators and even teachers. Just petting a dog may decrease feelings similar to homesickness, may increase your satisfaction with life, and can help you to feel more connected to others. For some, their dogs have been a lifeline, they help to improve our health and wellbeing, reduce blood pressure, stress and depression. It’s no wonder that an estimated 12 million, or 44 per cent, of households in the UK now have pets!
Health and fitness
Having a dog improves fitness as it encourages you to get out walking more. Even playing with your dog indoors, when you’d otherwise be lying on the sofa, loosens those limbs, gets your blood pumping, and stimulates your mind. Staying fit and active, whatever your age, helps to prevent a whole host of illnesses, and dogs give people that motivation to keep moving.
Anything that encourages you to get out and explore the great outdoors helps to improve mental wellbeing, and in many cases dog ownership does this. But, again, even when you’re inside, snuggles on the sofa can reduce stress and lift your mood due to the endorphins that it releases (these are the same chemicals that help to reduce blood pressure). That’s why pets have long been used to provide therapy to those in hospitals, care homes and hospices.
For some people, dogs aren’t just their best friends – they are their sole companions. Loneliness can affect people of any age, and pets work miracles in transforming the lives of those who feel alone and isolated. Having a dog around gives people a routine and a sense of purpose; a reason to get up in the morning.
“Pets can really make a house a home, and we understand that although many people love the idea of owning a dog, they just can’t commit to the full-time responsibility.”
That is why the Digs for Dogs home boarding service works so well! Caring for a house trained, family-friendly dog for a long weekend, or even a week or 2 whilst their owners are away, is the perfect solution – and that has certainly been the case for many of our home boarding families…
June says: “Sadly my husband died last year and following this I then had to have my last dog put down. I’ve had so many dogs over the years and of late I’ve been so lonely that becoming a home boarder has actually changed my life”.
Retired couple, Peter and Irene say: “When we lost our dog, we also lost a friendship circle and mixing in with other dog walkers. Being a Digs for Dogs host family has brought that all back to us and that’s a big benefit for us”.
The Howard family say: “Being a Digs for Dogs home boarder brings all the benefits of having a dog at home but without the full-time responsibility of owning one yourself.”
“We received a lot of input from customers, dog-lovers and, most importantly, our host families about why they love caring for dogs in their spare time. It was lovely to hear back from our hosts on the reasons they welcome other people’s dogs into their homes and how they feel this benefits them physically and emotionally.”
– Debbie Pomfret, Founder of Digs for Dogs
All in all, there are many reasons for wanting to care for dogs. From the addition of new-found doggy friends to stress relief and physical health benefits, caring for dogs for even short periods of times can do wonders for your wellbeing.
If you’re interested in joining our family of dog lovers, contact us today to book your appointment with your local branch.
📞 01204 895 355
📧 [email protected]
We look forward to welcoming you on board! 🐾