Scientific proof that our dogs bring us joy

October 3, 2017 Category: Canine Assistants

man playing with dog

A new study confirmed what you already knew—dogs improve your mental wellbeing. It’s called the pet-effect, and it’s why the joy of owning a dog is especially helpful for people with special needs.

For people with disabilities, the physical benefits of service dogs are obvious, but the emotional benefits have been a bit of an unknown from a scientific perspective. That’s why this ongoing four-year research study from Purdue University seeks to better understand the emotional and health benefits of service dogs.

The study’s initial results show:1

  • People with a service dog enjoyed a higher overall quality of life as well as better emotional and social functioning at school or work.
  • Family members showed the same emotional lift, plus, they worried less about the dog owner’s health.

The findings may not be surprising, but they are significant. The study is continuing with additional research to confirm these initial results and add more scientific proof that our dogs make us better, happier people.

The researchers worked with Canine Assistants, a nonprofit organization dedicated to education and placement of service dogs with children and adults who have physical disabilities or other special needs. Elanco, the maker of Trifexis® (spinosad + milbemycin oxime) has been a sponsor of Canine Assistants since 2015.

Learn more about Canine Assistants or learn more about the study.