Months ago, my Pastor’s dear dog, Beauty, passed on to glory, lol! I took it ‘P’ for a while. Now only Scooby is left (and Scooby just doesn’t sit in one spot, he’s always out and about). If previously I would count my blessings, I wouldn’t include my dogs but now, I have come to see them as not just pets but as gifts from God. The female is named Smart, while the male bears Smith.
When my Dad first brought them to the house, I just didn’t like them. Though they were small and harmless, yet, I would rather maintain my lane. My Father then would put them in a carton were they pooed, yuk!! Now, they’ve outgrown those boxes and we have them in cages now.
Pets require attention and dedication, but those are small prices to pay for the amount of physical and mental benefits they bring into our lives. If you are debating getting one, then the following reasons you should have a pet will likely have you heading out and searching for your next furry (or not so furry) addition to your home.
In recent times, disappointing scenarios seem endless and just when depression is about to settle in, I sight my playful Smart and Smith and this is nothing but the truth, I smile on account of seeing them. If I lock myself in the room, on getting out of the house, if again I sight them, I still smile as though I hadn’t seen them before. I see them, I see hope. If I stay longer than is usual in the room, they’ll scratch on the door just to get my attention. Needless to say, I have learnt a lot, especially about PERSISTENCE from them. (Luke 18)
I also love the fact that they get excited when I return from an outing, it’s like you can hear them bark “Taiwo, oyoyo”. Lol! When you feel welcome, you can’t treat them any less.
For those who actually know me, I am no AJEBO (i.e. I am not easily moved by trivial things). Before we had dogs, I would be offended by the degree of relationship some owners had with their dogs, but now, I know better. I do not allow them to lick my face or sleep on my bed (who wants tick?). However, unlike my mum whom they wouldn’t dare come close to, I embrace them ‘cause through them, God never seizes to spark up hope in me. Remember, “for the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made”….Romans 1:20.
Another cute thing I’ve seen them display is “TERRITORIALISM”, as in, they would kill an animal and will not allow the maid sweep it away but wait for us, the owners to see what conquest they’ve made. Haha! We see it, pat them on the head and the maid sweeps it. Lol!
You might have had bad experiences from the past with dogs, it could have even been from your dream. But the good far outweighs the bad. I have experienced it firsthand. So here’s a list of the good.
1. Pets Provide Constant And Loving Companionship
People are not always around when you need them, but God is. Pets come pretty close though. They are almost always in a playful mood, and they are happy to be in your presence. You can be yourself around pets. You can dance silly or talk silly, and they will not judge you. In fact, depending on the pet they will love the silliness and get silly themselves.
2. Pets Help Reduce Stress
It has become very apparent that stress affects our mental and physical health and our world has become more stressful than ever. We live in a fast-paced world which demands our attention and can easily wear us out. There are certain methods to reduce stress, but one of the best is to own a pet. Pets provide support like a best friend because they are always available to listen (without judgement), which can help you unload after a hectic day. Of course, love like that is a good stress reliever, but constant companionship with a loving being has been shown to improve health in many other ways.
An impressive number of studies have shown that companionship with an animal boosts your immune system, improves heart health, reduces physical pain, and improves mental health as well. One man with Lupus swears that the cat he received after his diagnosis was what kept him going for 21 years with little pain, good mental health, and very few physical issues. Even though his cat has passed on, he still says that his love for that cat is keeping him strong and healthy. That’s a testament to the power of true love that animals have.
Whether your preferred companion is a dog or a cat, talking out issues with them can help you see the situation differently, let out some steam, and feel more relaxed (if someone sees you and thinks you’re mad, no be me send you sha).
3. Better Your Ability To Read Nonverbal Communication
A pet cannot speak (except it’s an ass like Balaam’s donkey), so you have to be able to read their cues and body language. You will be amazed at how this ability can transfer into your daily life with other people. It is said that almost 90% of communication is nonverbal. Having a good grasp on it can help you have better relationships both in your personal and work life.
4. Teaches You To Be More Compassionate
12 So, as God’s own chosen people, who are holy [set apart, sanctified for His purpose] and well-beloved [by God Himself], put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience [which has the power to endure whatever injustice or unpleasantness comes, with good temper]; Colossians 3:12
Compassion is an instruction for every Christian.We need more compassion in our lives, both self-compassion and compassion towards others. Owning a pet who depends on you for survival, good health, and happiness can definitely cause you to become a more compassionate person. You have to look outside of your own wants and needs and look into their wants and needs. And, more importantly, you have to take action on their wants and needs!
For example, you may want to just Netflix and chill all day, but if you own a dog and see the desperation in their eyes to go for a walk. Choosing to understand their need to burn energy off and get out into the world becomes less of an option and more of an act of kindness. You can easily extend your ability for compassion to other people and the world around you, and that benefits everything in your life. For yourself, the benefits of having compassion are less stress, more awareness, more accountability, and an overall happier life. For others, the benefits of having compassion are a better world to live in or a better outlook of their day.
5. Pets Give You Something To Be Responsible For
No matter what type of pet you get, it will require you to take care of it.
This is especially true for kids who are learning the value of routine and good habits. However, adults can benefit from the consistent responsibility as well.
6. Pets Provide Entertainment
Pets are a great source of entertainment. They are living creatures that have habits, eccentricities, and personalities that can keep you laughing for hours. Dogs, cats and birds are probably most known for having distinct personalities. I used to have this lizard once though. It would wink at the most auspicious moments. Take for example when I’m lying to my parents about school fees. The best part is that pet’s personalities can distract you from issues you are having, cause you to engage in more heart-healthy laughter, and keep boredom away.
7. Pets Can Sense Danger (or are Messengers of God if you will)
We all know that dogs will bark when they sense someone near the house, and that can be very good for home security. However, pets can sense far more than just a stranger. Just consider all the Nollywood movies where a dog prevents its owner from ingesting diabolic substances. You think that’s just in the movies ba? Well, there’s no smoke without fire. I’m sure Balaam would beg to differ.
You can find tons of heartwarming stories like these. No matter what kind of pet you get, animals seem to have a sense of danger that we don’t always have, and a pet just may save your life!
With these few points of mine, I’m sure you want to buy a pet now. That’s good. I’m selling my dogs come and buy. Or is it cat you want? I have some tabbies I can give you for shikini money. Just leave a comment if you’re interested or you know someone who is or even if you’re not interested. Whatever you do share and leave a comment!