Many animal-lovers thought a cat or puppy can help you live a longer, happier, healthier life. But does the social sciences back them up?
My childhood dog was announced Biff. Biff was a handful. He was a loud, cocky shetland sheepdog who exuded bravado and gallantry. Yet, underneath it all, he fought with the dog version of impostor syndrome. Biff was a bag of masked anxiety. He was like the kid in academy who says he has visualize all the scary movies, but refuses to go to any sleepovers where scary movies are played; the kid who has ” a girlfriend at another academy “. It was that fragile area I specially cherished about Biff during my teenage years. We shared an danger that neither of us had the cognitive sciences to put into terms. This was a friendship- one that lasted as he flourished older, grumpier and more infirm.
He was an exceptionally licky dog, and desired good-for-nothing more than slurping his tongue over our jeans, shoes, socks and coatings. Officially, this behaviour was something we attempted to quash- but, every few nights, I would tiptoe into the kitchen and allow him to lick my naked sides and wrists to his heart’s content. For me, the awarenes was tickly and tranquilize, and never formerly disgusting, even though those around me told me it was not a good sentiment, mainly because it was highly likely that, on any caused daylight, Biff had fasten his beak into some poor fox’s decompose corpse. I didn’t care. I washed my hands like a surgeon afterwards, certainly. But it was what Biff wanted.
I haven’t had a dog since Biff( I’m nearly 40 ), and my family and I are deciding whether it’s time to get our own hound. This feels like a very big decision. Part of the reason we want a bird-dog is that we want to walk more. We want to be healthier. We want to be happier. But questions flutter anxiously in the quarry of my belly. Will having a pet genuinely establish us happier? Will we be healthier? Does having a pet always become us better parties?