Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on February 04, 2017
CDC: "Health Benefits of Pets," "Healthy Pets, Healthy People: Dogs.", Harvard Medical School: "Get Healthy, Get a Dog: The health benefits of canine companionship," , "Having a dog can help your heart -- literally.", National Park Service: "The Health Benefits of Companion Animals."
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For starters, your dog gives you some of the inner strength it takes to lose weight. He can ease your stress and make you more mindful. This may boost your resolve to stick with a weight loss program and let junk food cravings pass. He'll also help you meet other dog owners, and may boost you slim-down efforts.
Losing weight's not easy. Friends support you when the going gets tough, and they make great exercise buddies. Speaking of exercise, it's a key part of keeping extra pounds off once you lose them. And guess who's happy to get moving with you-- your romping, reliable, playful pal, that's who. So hop off the couch and get active together daily.
Finally, the healthier you feel, the more likely you are to stay active. Lucky for you, lower blood pressure and cholesterol are just a couple of possible perks of being a pet owner. Maybe you can have a howling good time losing weight after all. Your dog sure seems to think so.