Waggle, a crowdfunding organization based in Hadlyme, CT, has recently released an article on the importance of the bond between humans and their pets. The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has defined this bond as "...a mutually beneficial and dynamic relationship between people and animals." Humans are connected to their pets in many ways. People treat their pets like family members, and according to the American Pet Products Association (APPA), in 2021, Americans had spent $123.6 billion on their pets, up from $69.5 billion in 2017. And while people spend such large amounts of money on their pets, these animals also help people in unseen ways, such as enhancing their mood, improving their immune system, and helping them cope with life.
This special bond between humans and animals can be traced back to ancient history. Humans have relied on animals for thousands of years, and it is estimated that as far back as 15,000 years ago, animals played a critical part in various activities that were required for human survival, such as farming, hunting, herding, and more.
Studies have shown that pets provide many positive health benefits for their human masters. These include: reduction of stress; reduction of blood pressure; increase in oxytocin levels, and management or reduction of pain. Spending 10 minutes interacting with a pet can significantly decrease cortisol levels, the stress hormone. According to Bayer, studies have revealed that people with dogs are 15 percent less likely to succumb to heart disease. Marwan Sabbagh, M.D., a neurology professor at the Barron Neurological Institute in Phoenix, AZ, had observed that just petting an animal can reduce the level of cortisol and increase the release of serotonin, thus resulting in a reduction of blood pressure and heart rate, and also in a better mood.
It has been noted that physical interaction with a pet provides emotional advantages by preventing loneliness and social isolation and reinforcing resilience. And when the quality of life of a person improves, the levels of stress can decrease, negative thoughts can disappear, and people can reintegrate into the community as they care for their pets.
Meanwhile, the Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) is a nonprofit research and educational organization established in 2010 by the APPA, Petco, and Zoetis to gather, finance, and share scientific studies that provide evidence of the positive health effects of companion animals. And HABRI has indicated that the five noteworthy benefits of the human-animal bond are: relief of stress; preventing or relieving depression; counteracting loneliness and social isolation; encouragement of more physical activity and improvement of physical fitness; and facilitation of healing and resiliency.
The human-animal bond can also be beneficial for seniors. For example, the University of Michigan/AARP 2019 National Poll on Healthy Aging found after surveying 2,051 adults between 50 and 80 years of age that: 86 percent of pet owners stated that the animal had made them feel loved; 70 percent of the pet owners indicated that the animal helped in decreasing their stress; and 88 percent of the pet owners said their pets allowed them to enjoy life.
As for the future of the human-animal bond, the Michigan State University's College of Veterinary Medicine website states, "As the human-animal bond has evolved throughout time, it will likely continue to develop as the relationships people share with different animals also change." At Waggle, they are focused on doing everything they can to ensure that the human-animal bond will continue and flourish.
Waggle is an organization that provides a revolutionary crowdfunding model for pets in crisis, connecting people who love animals to pets and their owners facing the difficult decision of costly veterinary expenses or economic euthanasia. Recurring donations are employed to develop matching donation grants and a safety net for the animals. Waggle's technology can double the effect of giving by establishing "venture philanthropists," as the donors' first $1 is converted into $2. The result is the chance of a dear family pet getting a life-saving treatment.
Those who want to learn more about the value of the human-animal bond can visit the Waggle Foundation, Inc. website or contact them through email.
For more information about Waggle Foundation, Inc., contact the company here:
Waggle Foundation, Inc.
P.O. Box 319
Hadlyme, CT 06439