HomeAnimalsHumans Love Dogs More Than Other People, According to Study
Humans Love Dogs More Than Other People, According to Study
Nov 3, 2017
Do you ever find it more upsetting to see a dog die in a movie than a person? If so, you're not alone, according to a study completed by Northeastern University. We really do love dogs, and sometimes we have more empathy for them than we do for fellow humans. It doesn't necessarily make us bad people. We see dogs as innocent, poor and defenseless creatures, and it makes us upset whenever something bad happens to them. Are you a dog person?
Two studies. The first study was done by a UK-based medical research charity. Two fake campaigns were organized -- one to raise money for a man in peril, and one to raise money for a dog, also in dire circumstances.
The results. Based on the contributions made to the campaigns, people donated much more money to the dog's fund than the human's. So, does that mean we're more affected by suffering dogs than suffering people? It might.
The Northeastern Study. The Northeastern study consisted of having subjects read news articles about bad things happening to puppies, dogs, babies and adults. As it turns out, we do care about babies, but we don't care about adults as much as puppies and dogs.
Empathy. We empathize more with dogs than we do other people. Why? Because we view dogs as inherently good, loving creatures.
The urge to protect. We see dogs as innocent and defenseless. We want to protect them.
It's not that we don't care about other people. We absolutely DO care about other people, and the studies do not suggest otherwise. The disparity can be better explained by the fact that we see other adults as being better equipped to defend themselves than babies, dogs or puppies.
Members of the family. Dogs are more than just pets to many of us. They're members of the family and we love their companionship.
What about cats? Neither study addressed the topic of cats. However, other studies have shown that campaigns designed to benefit cats and kittens have raised more money than campaigns raising money for people.
Why we love dogs. Owning a dog can be good for us. The simple act of petting a dog can reduce stress.
Heart health. Yes, dog ownership has been proven to be good for your health. It can even reduce blood pressure.
Having a dog in the house can boost your immune system. Dogs are covered in germs, and believe it or not--that's a good thing. Dogs expose us to a wide variety of germs and actually help us to boost our immune systems, and we wind up getting sick less often than people without dogs.
Allergies. Similarly, owning a dog can help you battle allergies. Children who grow up in households with dogs are less likely to battle allergies as adults.
You'll get more exercise. Dog ownership and exercise go hand in hand. Owning a dog means taking walks, something which we may not necessarily make time for were it not for our four-legged friends.
Dogs make you happier. Dogs can help you fight depression. Hanging out with a pet helps your brain to release oxytocin, which makes you feel good.
You'll be less stressed at work. More and more companies are encouraging employees to bring their dogs to work. It makes for a happier, less stressed environment.