The current health crisis and stay-at-home orders make this a difficult time for everyone. Fear and uncertainty seem to permeate our every waking hour, and contribute to feelings of helplessness, anxiety, and depression. Luckily, you have a unique way to combat these feelings with something that you already have living in your house: your Corgi. That’s right – for thousands of years, humans have cultivated relationships with dogs, and the strong bond that developed between human and canine continues to evolve. We’ve come a long way in our journey from early man’s domestication of dogs to help with hunting, herding, and security. Today, we rely on dogs for companionship, comfort, and love. And there’s a perfect reason why: Dogs are good for our mental health. For all the reasons we love our Corgis, some are scientifically proven to benefit us in return. Your Corgi is good for your mental health, and here are eight ways your Corgi is helping you cope during these unprecedented times.
Your Corgi Helps Fight Depression
A 2011 study by the Centers for Disease Control found that 1 in 10 adults in the U.S. reported symptoms of depression. The National Institute for Mental Health Reports that:
“Major Depressive Disorder is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for ages 15-44.” Additionally, “Major depressive disorder affects approximately 14.8 million American adults, or about 6.7 percent of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year.”
With those numbers, it’s no wonder that more people than ever are seeking relief from an ever-increasing spectrum of pharmaceuticals. As it turns out, though, your best weapon in the battle against depression might be your Corgi.
Your Corgi Provides Companionship
Depression is an isolating disease that can make you pull away from friends, family, and society in general. Your Corgi provides you with unconditional acceptance and helps you feel like you are not alone.
Your Corgi’s Love is Unconditional
A significant factor in the relationship you have with your Corgi is what researchers call “uncomplicated love.” With human family members, relationships can be complex. Your relationship with your Corgi is simple. Your Corgi loves you and wants to be near you, no matter what.
Your Corgi Helps You Stick to a Routine
No matter what’s going on in your life, your Corgi’s life revolves around a few basic needs. Your Corgi needs to eat, walk, and go to the bathroom. Sticking to your Corgi’s schedule helps you stay on track with a schedule, too - - very important during these days that all seem to blend into each other.
Your Corgi Keeps You Accountable
During these “blursdays,” it’s tempting to throw the blankets over your head and not bother. But your Corgi has only you to rely on, and that helps focus your attention on something besides yourself. Taking care of your Corgi makes you feel valued. What would your Corgi do without you?
Your Corgi Forces You to Exercise
Thank goodness for active little Corgis! You know you’re not going to get away with staying all day indoors on the couch with this little busybody around. Getting outside for some fresh air, even if just for a few minutes, is good for your mental health. A few minutes is probably not going to satisfy your Corgi, though, so put on that mask and get out in the sunlight for a while. It will do both you and your Corgi a world of good.
Your Corgi Provides Sensory Stress Relief
We humans crave touch because it’s good for us. Going in for a hug or holding hands with another human releases “feel good” hormones that promote a sense of wellbeing. Scientific studies have revealed that humans experience the same hormonal changes when they interact with dogs. Specifically, petting a dog for a few minutes activates serotonin, prolactin, and oxytocin (the “feel good” hormones). At the same time, levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, decrease. Cuddling and caressing your Corgi is good for you, and them.
Your Corgi Helps Your Social Life
During normal times, having a Corgi is an instant conversation starter when you encounter other dog lovers on a walk or out in public. In the age of COVID, you can still enjoy a bit of socializing while out with your Corgi. When you’re strolling around your neighborhood (with a mask on, safely distancing yourself from others), give a friendly wave to other dog walkers you see, and smile with your eyes, and nod at other passers-by. When it’s safe to be closer, remember those you’ve seen out and about during this time and introduce yourself and your Corgi. You might find you’ve made some new friends when this is all over.
Until then, Corgi Lovers, stay safe and stay home. Take a moment each day to appreciate the things in your life that keep you healthy and happy – like your Corgi.
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