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Does petting a dog could affect a person's blood pressure?
Question Date: 2013-09-19
Answer 1:

This is an interesting question. I'm not sure if there have been studies that show this, but my guess would be that it could, and here's why: When people are stressed out, their bodies release stress hormones, such as cortisol and adrenaline. These hormones act by inducing a "fight or flight" response in the body, which results in a faster heart beat, as well as several other physical responses. These leads to a temporary spike in blood pressure. Now, I would imagine that if someone who is stressed out starts petting a dog and begins to feel more relaxed, the body moves away from the "fight or flight" response and into a "rest and digest" state of being, where the heart beat slows down and blood pressure would decrease. However, remember to take this with a grain of salt -- I'm not aware of research that has been performed regarding this topic!

Answer 2:

Petting a dog or interacting with one in any way relieves stress. The level of cortisol, a stress hormone produced in the adrenal gland, is lowered. For this reason, a person's blood pressure lowers. Studies show owning a dog helps fight depression, lowers blood pressure, lowers heart rate, help someone with autism address their senses, and calms a person. That furry little friend is worth more than you will ever know.

Answer 3:

If you like dogs, then being with a dog will relax you, and when you relax, your blood pressure will drop if it has been elevated. Spending time with beloved family or friends that is free of stress will have the same effect.

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