With mental health finally getting the limelight it deserves, the importance of addressing, managing, and working on mental health issues such as stress, anxiety, depression, and personality disorders has been recognized by the majority. While therapy and medication are more common, traditional treatment options for mental health conditions, studies have found that adopting a pet can be extremely beneficial.

What Is an Emotional Support Animal?

An emotional support animal, in simple words, is any pet that provides emotional support to the owner. From dogs and cats to rabbits, Winnie pigs, birds, horses, and even fishes, any pet can be certified as an emotional support animal.  

The concept of getting an emotional support animal is not new but definitely something that everyone, especially people dealing with mental health should be aware of.

The only difference between a pet and an emotional support animal is that the emotional support animal is certified and is allowed to enter places that prohibit animal or pet entry in general.

But does that mean you need to get a special emotional support animal?

Not really. If you already have a pet and you believe it offers you emotional support in your difficult times, you can easily get your pet certified as an emotional support animal. Consult My ESA doctor, the process is easy, quick, and online.

Here are the reasons why adopting a pet for your mental health is a better decision.  

Pets Can Reduce Anxiety and Stress

Pet lovers can confirm how even the presence of their pets can alleviate stress and reduce anxiety. With pets around you, you can feel waves of happiness and joy. Their attention and affection truly can change your mood almost instantly. There are several studies that support the belief that pets can help with stress, anxiety, and mental health conditions.

In most cases of depression, anxiety, and chronic stress, loneliness is a trigger that often gets neglected because there is no specific “treatment” that can reduce this feeling of loneliness or emptiness. Of course, people can choose to stay with someone, meet or make friends, socialize, or learn to love their own company, but it is not always possible or is at least extremely difficult for a lot of people. Keeping a pet is relatively easier as it does not trigger social anxiety, and their love language is pure and strong.

You Can Skip the Baby Stage

When you choose to adopt a pet instead of buying one, you have the option to adopt a pet of any age. There are a lot of people who wish to adopt a pet but are so occupied with work and stuff that they cannot invest time in training a baby. Pets in their baby stage demand a lot of attention and time and in case you, for any reason, cannot invest that much time and effort, it is better to adopt an older pet. Older pets are usually easier to handle, relatively calmer, and quick learners. They are often offered basic training by the animal shelter.

Pets Can Help You Feel Confident

The unconditional love of an adopted pet can boost your self-esteem. For people who are dealing with social anxiety or in fact any mental health condition, there is a considerable decline in confidence, which in turn can affect their relationship with themselves. Love is extremely powerful and the unconditional love of a pet can not only kill the loneliness but even make the owner realize their own importance. There is a being that cannot stop loving you, their whole world revolves around you and they are dependent on you for everything. This sense of being loved, seen, appreciated, and responsible can significantly boost confidence in an individual.

Their Presence Is Therapeutic

We have already mentioned this above as well, the presence of a pet is therapeutic. Pets can help you feel better both mentally as well as physically. They can help you in following a routine and sticking to it. The presence of a pet in your life and place can act as a form of therapy. When combined with other treatments that you have already been taking, it can expedite your overall treatment and improve the quality of your life. Pets are much more than just cute, furry friends but even their cuteness can offer therapeutic effects, cuddling these furry friends can help you calm down and relax.

Most importantly, when you adopt a pet, you are giving them the human presence that they want. They will make sure they are around you and make you feel better in every way possible. You matter to them and this care they shall show you is therapeutic.

Adopting a Pet Is Easy on Your Wallet

Lastly, adopting a pet costs you either nothing or way less than purchasing a pet from the pet shop. Although we firmly believe it shouldn’t be about money but humanity, it is one factor that a lot of people do consider while getting a pet. Adopting a pet from the shelter would mean you are willing to help that poor being and let them know how amazing this world can be. Any animal deserves to be loved and taken care of. Moreover, it is important to completely eliminate the trade of animals from the market. Even though it is a difficult goal and it will take quite some time to actualize it, every initiative matters.

Parting Words

Mental health is an extremely sensitive and important topic. Adopting a pet can not only help manage a number of conditions but it can even enhance your personality. The emotional support these furry, little friends can offer is incomparable and it is a great way to say yes to better mental health.