The statement said that people who own a dog have lower risk of heart disease, although it is not a cause and effect relationship. It is more likely that healthier people tend to have pets and get more exercise than other people.
"Pet ownership, particularly dog ownership, is probably associated with a decreased risk of heart disease," said Glenn N. Levine, M.D., professor at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. Levine is chairperson of the committee that analyzed the studies conducted on pet and heart health, and wrote the latest statement.
Previous work conducted on pet ownership has shown that people with pets are more likely to live longer, happier lives than those who don't have any pets. Also, for some children, exposure to dogs early in life makes them less sensitive to allergens, which in turn reduce their chances of developing allergies.
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