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International Cat Day: The Many Health Benefits Of Having A Pet

International Cat Day was first celebrated in 2002. It is celebrated globally which marks the bond shared between humans and cats. Read here to know the many health benefits of pet therapy.

International Cat Day: The Many Health Benefits Of Having A Pet

International Cat's Day was first celebrated in 2002

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. International Cat Day is celebrated on 8th August, every year
  2. It is celebrated to mark the special bond between humans and cats
  3. The day is meant to promote animal welfare

First celebrated in 2002, International Cat Day is a global celebration which marks the bond shared between humans and cats. Cats and pets, in particular, are a man's best friend. We share an emotional connection with our pets; a bond that represents nature at its best. International Cat's Day also promotes animal welfare through means of awareness of animal rights and by throwing light on many atrocities faced by animals. We as humans include animals in our lives in a way that we can even cater to our mental and physical health problems through animals. This is known as pet therapy. Pet therapy is a therapeutic mechanism for using animals to help people heal health problems such as cancer, heart issues, and mental health problems.

Also called animal-assisted therapy (AAT), pet therapy basically helps human beings cope with their mental issues through systematic meetings of interaction between them and a trained animal. Animals really are nature's gift to us. Most used animals in AAT are cats and dogs, although fishes and horses may also be chosen.

p29h429gInternational Cat's Day is a global celebration which marks the bond shared between humans and cats
Photo Credit: iStock

What is Feline-assisted therapy?

When cats are used in animal-assisted therapies, the interaction comes to be known as feline-assisted therapy. Cats have occupied the topmost position in the pyramid of healing. It is proven that the vibration of a cat's purring has properties which help people heal from sadness and anxiety. Cats have helped people to an extent where people have recovered from infections, surgeries, and even depression anxiety disorders! Cuddling a cat in your arms can calm nerves, treat cancer and cardiovascular pain, and strengthen the immune system.

Also read: 7 Reasons Why You Should Keep A Pet

Lastly, cats also cure diseases such as arthritis, ADHD, diabetes, progressive muscular atrophy, and osteoporosis and autism. Cat therapies are provided in prisons, kindergartens, nursing homes, hospitals, and schools.

Well, who says we can heal only when someone talks to us? Learn it from animals, it is also about listening.

 

Be kind to every kind! #internationalcatday #letscoexist

A post shared by Alia (@aliaabhatt) on

What are the physical and mental benefits of pet therapy?

Pet therapy helps treat many physical problems. It is said that pet therapy helps in lowering blood pressure and improving cardiovascular health. When around pets, our body releases hormone oxytocin which triggers happiness and feeling of calmness in us.

Pet therapy basically means destressing yourself from everything that has been bothering you mainly because by playing with animals, you settle every worry and inhibition in your head and find solace in the environment. The entire process of AAT helps relieve the physical pain of the body. You will also be surprised to know that an interaction with cats or other animals can improve your motor and joint movements.

Also read: Tips To Make Your Work Environment Stress Free

Pet therapy also aids our mental dilemmas. If someone with depression chooses to go for the therapy with cats, he/she may return feeling really less anxious, confident and elevated. Research tells us that stroking fingers on a cat relieves stress and produces hormones in the body which make us happy. When we are in a setting such as that created during AAT, we get to recognize our inner inhibitions and vent them out. This helps in eliminating the feeling of alienation and loneliness to some extent.

The comfort with which pet therapy treats us makes us improve our social skills such as communication. Therapy cats help in to give us the motivation to reignite the urge to join social activities and interact in social settings.

Also read: Impact Of Music Therapy On Mental Health

Cats can be used at pet therapists even in cases involving children. Children connect pets way better than adults do hence, their interaction with pets brings about a drastic change in their behavior. Cats in AAT help children deal with speech and emotional disorders. They increase self-confidence in children and help them concentrate on their studies.

Happy International Cats Day!

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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