Did you know that your brain releases oxytocin, "the feel-good" hormone in the brain when you pet your dog or cat?
What is Oxytocin? (http://bit.ly/10NOoy7)
"Oxytocin is a powerful hormone. When we hug or kiss a loved one, oxytocin levels drive up. It also acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain. In fact, the hormone plays a huge role in pair bonding."
This wonderful feeling can come from dogs, cats, and even goldfish! A study showed that having a fish tank at a nursing home improved appetites.
"Watch a Lassie movie and spit into a cup. It doesn't sound like it, but this is cutting-edge research. By analyzing saliva, researcher Cheryl Krause-Parello showed that merely watching a dog in a movie lowered people's stress. Krause-Parello, assistant professor and director of the Center for Nursing Research at Kean University in Union, N.J., learned that people felt better after watching a Lassie flick because their levels of cortisol, a hormone associated with stress, took a free fall."
Do you have a pet? Have you had these great experiences with them? Personally, golden retrievers are my favorite dog. I have one named Oliver.
Full article at Psychology Today
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Photo credit RKleine