happy dog

Nine Ways That Dogs Relate to Us

Have you ever had a bad day, only to be comforted by your furry companion once arriving home? Many dog owners have found their four-legged friends can pick up on when their owners are having a hard time. After all, they are man’s best friend and they love seeing us happy.

So many studies have been conducted over time in regards to canine behavior and its relation to human behavior, let us know that dogs are so much more in tune with our emotions than we realize. Here are nine ways our dogs understand and adapt to us.

  1. They help reduce anxiety/panic attacks. According to a study conducted by Georgia State University, dogs can help decrease feelings of stress and loneliness, especially in college students. Another study conducted by the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology showed that owning a pet can help our overall level of happiness increase. The happier we are, the less likely we are to fall victim to crippling anxiety.
  2. They too experience the “green-eyed monster.” That’s right, even our dogs feel jealousy! According to a study conducted by the University of California – San Diego, studies showed that dogs displayed emotions when they saw their owners play with a stuffed toy dog.
  3. They create a natural bond with us. When we cuddle with our beloved companion, oxytocin (known as the “love hormone”) is released. Dogs can sense this affection, making the connection between it and its owner even stronger.
  4. They know how to read our expressions. Dogs are pretty good at reading the expressions on our faces, particularly happiness, and anger. This explains how they know when we have had a bad day, as they are sensitive to our feelings and behaviors.
  5. They know how to help us heal. Therapy dogs are a great help for those who have experienced emotional/mental and physical trauma. This is why so many victims of bombings, as well as veterans, have dogs. Remember how dogs help relieve feelings of anxiety and panic? Same applies to these patients, as dogs have been proven to help ease PTSD attacks.
  6. They are in tune with our level of health. One of the strongest senses a dog has is their sense of smell. It’s possible they can detect an allergy of yours if it’s present in the room, and they may also be able to detect certain forms of cancer before you’re aware of its presence in your body. Some medical facilities have trained dogs to assist those who experience seizures. There is just so much good our beloved dogs can do!
  7. Their germs may be beneficial to us. Studies have shown that owning a dog can help us stay healthier through coming in contact with their bacteria. Exposure to these microbes can help our bodies build a stronger immune system. In that case, let us welcome all of the puppy kisses we can get!
  8. They see us as a family. Dogs may just be a part of our world; however, we are their world. Research has shown that canine brains exhibit feelings of love for us and humans are seen as a part of their tribe. Dogs rely on humans more than their own kind for love and protection, so it makes sense just how important we are to them in their eyes.
  9. They know how to love someone for who they are. The quote at the end of Marley and Me couldn’t be any truer. A dog doesn’t care about the fancy things we may or may not have; they’re too busy providing us with unconditional love. Why? Because they believe we deserve it, no matter what. Just one of the many reasons why we, in return, love them unconditionally.