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5 Ways Loving Your Dog Is Good For You

5 Ways Loving Your Dog Is Good For You

dog chihuahua in heart

Loving A Dog—A Healthy Decision

Life without a dog? Unthinkable. But did you know loving your dog is good for you too?

What was once a species for hunting and gathering some 14,000+ years ago, dogs have transformed into ‘best friend’—for both men and women. However, nowadays, we’ve become much more than mere best friends.

Over the centuries we have learned to understand dogs like no other creature. That understanding speaks to the bond between dog and human. Ask any dog person. Dogs and humans—the agreement between these two (2) different species—is a much richer relationship than once thought.

Dogs aren’t just pets.

Dogs were once used only for hunting and herding. In return, humans were responsible to keep them warm and fed. These days, that’s just not enough. The love between dog and human has developed so much deeper. The responsibility of dog ownership has amplified.

This kind of dog love is good for our health as well.


woman petting dog

Dog Love: A Healthy Connection

The need for species we call ‘dog’ to be used for hunting over the years has dissolved. As dogs became more attentive to us, we became more enamored with them. Over the years, we became smitten with this loyal, furry friend.

Today, we share our homes and meals with these creatures. (Some dogs are even allowed under the covers.) Dogs help us through the most trying chapters of our lives and assist us with activities of daily living. They keep us company when people aren’t around and learn to love us despite our faults.

Dogs know how to share our space.


dogs cozy under blanket

Loving Your Dog Is Good For (Both Of) You

1. Dogs Provide Companionship

There’s a natural connection between dog and human—a partnership and unmistakable bond between these two creatures.

The secret may be how dogs look at us.

While dogs often use their eyes to dominate other species, they use eye contact to solidify the dog-human bond. According to a Japanese team of researchers, there’s a significant chemical change that occurs when humans gaze into the eyes of their best buddy. Oxytocin, a hormone known for social bonding, is determined to significantly increase when gazing between the two (2) species occurs.

“Urine samples were collected from 21 pairs of dogs and owners, before and after experimental sessions in which the owners petted the dogs, talked to the dogs, and often simply gazed at the dogs. The oxytocin levels of both the dogs and the humans were higher at the end of the sessions—and they were highest in the pairs in which the most gazing took place. In this friendship, chemistry—literally—matters.” —Jeffrey Kluger, Time Magazine


young girl and dog looking at each other

2. Dogs Are Family

Dogs provide companionship and they’re considered part of the family. They go everywhere with us. And when we can’t take them with us, we get a Sitter. Sometimes dogs stay at daycares or at exclusive pet hotels that cater to their every bark.

Accommodations for pets consist of lodging and boarding. However, sometimes these facilities host birthday parties, football games, “Gotcha Day” celebrations, and crazy-hat-dress-up gatherings.

This kind fur family fun makes for amazing photo opportunities too!

dog chihuahua birthday party hat red bowtie

Fur Kids

There’s a closeness between dog and human that’s often misunderstood. The bond is intense.
Dogs aren’t human children, but the bond can be just as intense. If given the opportunity, most people feel better knowing that they can select their fur family. In return, dogs will most often choose human company over other species too.

Children learn responsibility when they care for a dog. Research suggests kids with pets in the home have less allergy troubles. Also, they seem to learn empathy when they’re tasked with taking care of a pet—particularly a dog.

As a pet guardian, children have a better chance of becoming a healthy human being at an early age. Of course there’s always a sweet spot on what age is best for children to own a pet. That age depends on your individual household.

In addition, elderly individuals gain a sense of belonging with a beloved pet in their life. Dog ownership allows adults a way to connect on a deeper level. Most notable, caring for a dog gives seniors more opportunities to be social with other dog owners.

woman holding dog at beach

Your #1 Fan

When you arrive home, your dog will act as if they just won the lottery.

What other creature will be just as happy to see you whether you’re gone for five (5) minutes or five (5) hours? This cheerful greeting is always a welcome surprise. Now that’s a family you want by your side!

“They love you more than you love yourself.” —Bill O.


3. Dogs Have Important Jobs

Dogs are courageous and stand by their master.

Some dogs protect our country, others guard our family. Still others are trained to detect evil or imprint harmful substances. Dogs can also be a remedy for many human ailments—both mental and physical conditions.

Dogs are capable of picking up on things that we can’t identify. With this “sixth sense”, a canine can detect when there’s something wrong with us before we’re even aware there’s a problem.

Dogs can “see” with their noses. They use several hundreds of thousands of olfactory cells and can detect time, instincts, and human emotional states with the most immediate and visceral ability. With their nose, dogs experience the world much more vividly than humans.

Yes, dogs are fascinating.

More Than Love: Dogs With Occupations

  • Emotional Support Dogs
    • Library appearances (children reading sessions)
    • Travel necessities
    • Schools
  • Search & Rescue Dogs
    • 9/11 Heroes
    • K9 Officers
    • Military
    • Weather disasters
  • Registered Service Dogs
    • Drug detection
    • Explosive detection
    • Medical emergencies, depression, anxiety, high blood pressure
    • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Registered Therapy Dogs
    • Assisted living (resident visits)
    • Courtroom appearances (children bravery to testify)
    • Hospitals visits (patient healing)
    • Terminal hospice (end of life patient comfort)

military dogs training - German shepherd

“Without this dog, I wouldn’t know how to function.” —Robert S., Veteran


“Patients will show improvement in many more ways than just love. Having her around is good for everyone.” —John H., LPTA


Speaking about his devoted therapy dog, “Laycee”, Physical Therapist, John H., LPTA at Regency at Shelby Township confirms the important job his Black Labrador Retriever has at his place of business.

  1. Residents who are in therapy sessions will have noticeable improvements from their sit to stand to walk exercises. There’s a noticeable difference in residents. They follow Laycee across the room and they’ll begin to move more. When she isn’t here, they tend to shy away.
  2. Once in the mere presence of Laycee, patients will become more verbal if they’re normally quiet.
  3. Residents (and staff alike) who are non-expressive will suddenly become more exuberant and will tend to perk up with a therapy dog by their bedside.
  4. In contrast, with Laycee in the therapy room, patients with a high level of anxiety instantly change. She allows people to stay calm and remain even tempered.
  5. In the presence of Laycee, we notice significant heart rate reduction in patients. Positive neurotransmitters in the brain ignite and the resident’s body tends to relax more.

If you ever sit and watch residents at a nursing facility, they sometimes get hostile. An irritated man who was ready to run people over and collide into them with his wheelchair, suddenly becomes calm when a therapy dog enters his space. As it turns out, all he wanted was to pet the dog.


4. Dogs Keep You Active

If you have a four-legged workout buddy, you’re more apt to move more. Make time to get out and get active with your dog.

Studies have shown that people who own a dog are more active than people who don’t own a dog. People are overall healthier and happier when they exercise. Therefore, when you exercise with your dog, there’s double benefit.

girl with dog winter snow

“My dog got me moving again. When Buffy hurt her knee, I had to take her to water therapy to strengthen her legs. The aquatics peaked my interest. The next week, I signed up for my own water aerobics class.” —Denise T.

Whether you stroll to the end of the street, or you’re training for a marathon, exercising together provides an opportunity to stay in shape together.

No longer are dogs just your snacking buddy. They can become your best workout partner! And, they’ll hold you accountable for your actions—or for your inactivity.

Have to run errands during the weekend but still want your dog to get their workout in? $10 Weekends: Doggy Day Camp is now available in your area. Stop in today, ask questions, and schedule your evaluation for your dog.


5. Dogs Need You

More than love, dogs need you.

Dogs give you the chance to be responsible for something other than yourself. They show extreme loyalty, hope, and devotion—just by looking at you.

Dogs show you how they see the world from their perspective. In exchange, we have a responsibility to provide them more than just food and shelter. You need to allow them playtime and toys. And, you need to play with them too.

dog playing with tennis ball

So there is a bit of condition attached to that ‘unconditional love’ after all.

“Dog owners tend to think they’re doing right by their pets, but most could do better; improving communication between dog and human is an important first step.” —Jeffrey Kluger, Time Magazine

Your dog allows membership into their world. You owe it to them to bond with them, any opportunity that you have. Communication goes both ways. Listen to them, pamper them, sing to them, love them. What about teaching them a new trick ?

Be in tune to your dog’s needs. Your snuggly friend needs you! When you master understanding your dog, loving your dog is real good for both of you.

Now that’s love.


Be Good To Yourself. Love Your Dog.

Your dog has the uncanny ability to love you back.

Dogs and humans take on each other’s characteristics. Our lives intertwine. Learn from your dog’s behaviors and attributes. There’s always room in your heart to love a dog.

Love them like they love you.

Whether you believe in dog love, or not, we might agree that dogs give our lives more meaning. With dogs, we live in the moment and we laugh more. We might even know people that share your endless capacity to love dogs.


Your Dog’s ‘Best Things’—With Love, From Our Dog People:

  • Cuddles
  • Faithfulness
  • Humorous
  • Hope
  • Loyalty
  • Snuggles
  • Tail wags
  • Unconditional love
  • Undeniable bond


dog with heart ornament in mouth, hat, outside snow, winter, Valentine's Day

The More Love The Better

Your dog, your family—your life. There’s no replacement for this kind of bond. Your dog looks at you and you melt. You’d do anything for them. You’re just that kind of person—you’re our kind of person.

And this kind of love is good for all of us.


What will YOU do for love? Visit: Best Friends Pet Hotel or call your favorite Best Friends center.


About The Author:
Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

Help Your Pet Shed Winter Weight

Winter weight gain: it’s a problem for our pets as well as for us because when the weather is cold and days are short, we are less likely to get outside and exercise.

According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, about 55% of all adult dogs are overweight or obese. And, just as in humans, excess weight on pets can lead to heart and respiratory problems, diabetes, cancer and kidney disease. Overweight dogs also are more susceptible to arthritis and other orthopedic problems.

You can tell if your dog is overweight with a quick “rib check.” When you run your hands over your dog, you should be able to feel his ribs and actually see a “waistline.” If you can’t, it’s time to take action. Just as for humans, weight control requires eating less and exercising more. And, now that spring is officially here, it’s time to get outside and get moving, say the experts.

The best exercise is a brisk walk or run, but can also include an active game of fetch in the backyard or a romp with canine friends at the local dog park. Young and middle-aged dogs should be exercised 20 to 30 minutes each day (that can be divided into two sessions of 10 to 15 minutes each). For older dogs, check with your vet to determine what’s appropriate, then choose a slower pace and be sure to monitor your pet for signs of stress.

When heading out for exercise with your pet, be sure to follow these safety rules:

  • Always use a leash – except when you are in a fenced dog park. Even if your pet is well-behaved, he could dart off in pursuit of a squirrel or other animal and become lost or hit by a car or truck.
  • When you walk or run with your dog, always face oncoming traffic. This puts the dog, if he is heeling correctly, on your left – away from the traffic.
  • If you are going out for a long walk or run or to the dog park, carry water and offer your dog some every 20 minutes.
  • If you want to try running or jogging with your dog, choose soft surfaces because asphalt can be damaging on your pet’s paws and joints. Start slowly, increasing the distance as you and your dog become conditioned.
  • On warm days, watch for signs of overheating, including heavy panting or salivating. Dogs don’t tolerate the heat as well as humans because they don’t cool by sweating. If you see signs of overheating, stop and cool your dog down.

Not into the active lifestyle yourself? Enroll your dog in daycamp or a playgroup. It’s a great way to keep him happy and active. Your local Best Friends center can help you find a program to encourage your pet to stay fit.

Best Friends Pet Hotel Announces ESOP Acquisition Led by Mosaic Capital Partners, Becoming The Largest Employee-Owned Pet Care Company

NORWALK, CT. (June 4, 2019) – Best Friends Pet Hotel, a national operator of pet hotels with 30 locations throughout the United States offering boarding, grooming, doggy day camp, training and retail services at each of its locations, announced today its Employee Stock Ownership Plan, or ESOP, acquisition led by Mosaic Capital Partners.

With this ESOP transaction, Best Friends has become the largest employee-owned company in the Pet Care industry. Jared Pinsker, CEO of Best Friends remarked. “Our people are our most critical assets. They devote themselves tirelessly to ensuring pets and pet owners have a wonderful experience at our facilities. As we continue to build on our tremendous relationships with guests and pet parents, to be able to have our employees now own the business through the ESOP is a wonderful outcome and opportunity for us. We could not be more excited.”

Ian Mohler, who led the transaction for Mosaic, agreed, “We feel tremendously fortunate to have the opportunity to partner with Best Friends. The pet services sector is extremely attractive as people increasingly see pets as extensions of their human families and spend accordingly. With a 20+ year operating history, Best Friends has a wonderful legacy in the communities it serves owing to the many, many passionate employees who have such incredible dedication to their clientele. We feel we have backed the best-in-class operator in this highly fragmented industry.”

Industry veteran Reed Howlett joined the partnership as an investor and Board Member. No stranger to the attractive trends in the pet sector, Reed most recently served as CEO of Nature’s Variety, an early mover in the natural and raw pet food category.

As an ESOP, Best Friends Pet Hotel has also become a member of Certified Employee-Owned (Certified EO). To become a member of Certified EO, companies must pass a rigorous certification process and prove significant and broad-based employee ownership.

Employee-ownership is a critical foundation of the Best Friends Pet Hotel culture. Employees treat pet guests like family and take the time to cater to each individual pet’s personalized need. Best Friends Pet Hotel has “Friendly staff that care for your furry family members as if they were their own,” pet parent Denise B. from Best Friends Pet Hotel in Avon, Connecticut commented about her most recent visit.

Employee-ownership strengthens the connection to the local communities in which Best Friends Pet Hotel operates, fosters financially savvy employees, and empowers employees to think and act like owners. This results in an engaged workforce and happy pets and pet parents alike – as the success of Best Friends Pet Hotel benefits both the company and employee alike. The ESOP provides a substantial retirement benefit to all eligible, full-time employees. In turn, this results in sustainable financial success that benefits the local community.

About Best Friends Pet Hotel
Founded in 1995, Best Friends Pet Hotel has enjoyed “leader of the pack” status for the past 24 years, as one of the largest privately-held independent pet care providers in the United States. With 30 locations, providing customers with the absolute best pet care in a convenient and friendly atmosphere where safety, comfort, and fun are at the core of what we do. We offer boarding, Doggy Day Camp, grooming, and training services. Learn more at

About Mosaic Capital Partners, LLC
Mosaic Capital Partners, LLC (“Mosaic”) is a private equity firm investing in privately held middle market companies. Based in Charlotte, NC, Mosaic employs private equity buyout strategies that incorporate the partners’ unique expertise in Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs). Mosaic aims to help business owners achieve liquidity, wealth transfer and ownership transition with its PE-ESOP product

About Certified Employee-Owned
To learn more about Certified EO, visit

Media Contact:
Julia Geffner

New Facility in Tyngsborough, MA Focused on Fun, Safe and Relaxing Total Pet Care

Grand opening celebration planned for Saturday, April 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. featuring free pet portraits, tours, treats, and demonstrations

April 2, 2019, Tyngsborough, Mass. 

Best Friends Pet Hotel is inviting pet-owning families to the new facility’s grand opening celebration on Saturday, April 6, 2019 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will offer free pet portraits with digital downloads, treats for pets at the Best Friends Treat Truck, refreshments for all guests, dog demonstrations, and tours of the new facility offering the latest in pet care to pampered dogs and cats – including a look at the splash park area, weather permitting.

Well-behaved dogs are welcome. The grand opening event will also feature an official ribbon cutting at 1:30 p.m.; all are welcome.

Staffed by pet-loving Best Friends Pet Hotel employees, the new custom-built 9,000 sq. ft. facility is located at Two Technology Drive in Tyngsborough and features overnight standard and luxury suites for boarding dogs, doggy day camp, dog training, and grooming services starting March 19, 2019.

Not to be outdone by the dogs, cat owners will enjoy boarding in the warm and inviting Kitty City, featuring natural lighting, a giant fish tank, and bird feeder viewing areas to keep cats stimulated and happy. All pets’ special needs are considered, and each guest is monitored closely. All pets are required to provide proof of vaccinations.

One of 30 locations, including one at Walt Disney World, Best Friends Pet Hotel is an all-breed pet care provider with a warm, friendly, clean and comfortable atmosphere. The outside and inside play areas designed with the latest advances in materials and safety.

“For nearly 25 years, we’ve been treating Merrimack Valley dogs and cats like family… that’s over 175 in dog years,” said Center Manager Becky Powers. “With this brand new Best Friends Pet Hotel in Tyngsborough, we will continue to serve our pet parents and guest to continue to be leader of the pack. We are proud to provide the absolute best and safest pet care in the area, from boarding, Doggy Day Camp, grooming and even training services.”

Day and overnight guests will enjoy all the “bells and dog whistles” in Tyngsborough:

  • Suites and luxury suites featuring the latest in design, sound mitigation and cleanliness.
  • Luxury Suites include PetChatz(R) so parents can video-chat and even distribute treats through a mobile application.
  • Suites access natural light with windows/skylights, and are designed to minimize stress.
  • The highest ratio of play space to suite space in the region, and dogs are divided by temperament and size.
  • Outdoor parks with water and a splash park feature (in season) and K9 grass with antimicrobial technology.
  • Indoor play yards equipped with rubberized flooring to minimize stress and sound, and reduce play-based injuries. The indoor play yards feature a seamless, comfortable flooring system with a bacteria-resistant surface for pet safety.
  • Webcams for pet parent viewing and emailed “report cards” and photos home.
  • Brand new grooming salon outfitted with all of the bells and whistles including custom built comfort bathtubs, a styling room with an outdoor pet relief area and a new express 30-minute grooming service.
  • State of the art DrainVac cleaning systems – the most advanced biosecurity system available – and used by over 90 percent of veterinary universities, using up to 40 percent less water.

The details make the difference at Best Friends Pet Hotel. The company offers full transparency, great communication with pet parents, the latest advances in safety, and a caring staff that loves your pet as much as they love their own.

For information, call 978-649-8585 or visit

About Best Friends Pet Hotel:
Founded in 1995, Best Friends Pet Hotel has enjoyed “leader of the pack” status for nearly 25 years. With 30 locations, we provide customers with the absolute best pet care in a convenient and friendly atmosphere where safety, comfort, and fun are at the core of what we do. We offer boarding, Doggy Day Camp, grooming, and training services.

Media Contact:
Julia Geffner

All Aboard: Best Friends Pet Care and PetChatz® Partner to Extend Services

Partnership will now bring leading video chat technology to more pet hotel pet suites, so pet owners are never far from furry friends

May 07, 2019, Minneapolis

A growing number of pet owners will soon have the ability to be on the beach in Barbados and still be able to call their beloved fur babies, have a two-way video chat, dispense treats and aromatherapy — all while pets are being boarded in a pet hotel — thanks to an expanded relationship between PetChatz and Best Friends Pet Care.

Best Friends started offering PetChatz® Greet & Treat® videophones within select hotel suites in 2016. Based on customer response and proven success, Best Friends will be adding PetChatz to new locations over the coming months.

“There’s a peace of mind that comes from knowing our pets feel secure and happy while we’re away,” said Lisa Lavin, PetChatz founder and CEO. “We created PetChatz to ease the anxiety that occurs when parents and pets are separated. Our partnership with Best Friends Pet Hotel is a perfect match because together, we give parents a trusted, reliable, one-stop solution to ensuring the comfort and safety of their pets while traveling.”

Best Friends Pet Hotel has been setting the standard in pet boarding since 1995. From fitness sessions to bedtime stories — a pet parent can design the perfect vacation for their pet. Best Friends has 30 centers and hospitals in 15 states and on site at Walt Disney World Resort.

PetChatz is an award-winning, Greet & Treat® videophone that enables pet parents to check in with their pets from anywhere, anytime via their smartphones, tablets or PCs. Parents can have two-way video chats with, dispense treats, and provide aromatherapy to their pets. The durable, pet-safe PetChatz system mounts flush to the wall over an electrical outlet or attaches to a kennel at eye-level ensuring pet safety and increasing peace of mind for the pet owner while they are away from their fur baby.

“PetChatz is an excellent complement to our state-of-the-art facilities and luxury pet suites,” said Jared Pinsker, CEO of Best Friends Pet Hotel. “The integration of PetChatz into select locations give our customers more value, convenience, and yet another way to enrich their pet’s stay at our hotels.”

To learn more, visit and


About PetChatz

PetChatz® is the founder of the “Treat Cam” category and is pioneering new technology that enables pet parents to have a physical interaction with their pets anywhere, anytime. The patented, award-winning PetChatz is a durable, pet-safe system that mounts to any wall or kennel and lets owners and their pets see each other, hear each other, and speak to each other. By clicking an icon, parents can also dispense a treat, provide a soothing aromatherapy, stream DOGTV, and record/share videos of their pets’ shenanigans. PetChatz is available at,, and


About Best Friends Pet Care

Founded in 1995, Best Friends Pet Hotel has enjoyed “leader of the pack” status for nearly 25 years. With 30 locations, including Walt Disney World, we provide customers with the absolute best pet care in a convenient and friendly atmosphere where safety, comfort, and fun are at the core of what we do. We offer boarding, Doggy Day Camp, grooming, and training services. Learn more at

Where To Find the Perfect Purebred Pet

Where To Find the Perfect Purebred Pet

Choosing the right dog for your family and lifestyle takes time and research. Many potential pet owners are torn between the longing to rescue an animal from a shelter and the desire to own a purebred pet. It is possible, however, to fill both needs by visiting your local humane shelter or rescue organization.

“Animal shelters are a great source for purebred pets,” said Betsy McFarland of The Humane Society of the United States. “Not only do they have a wonderful selection of adult animals for adoption, but they also have kittens and puppies. In fact, 25% to 30% of the dogs in shelters are purebred.”

The purebred facts
Before considering a purebred pet, it’s important to understand what the term means. Purebreds conform to a specific “breed standard,” offering the advantage of knowing what general physical and behavioral characteristics– including size, appearance, and temperament — that breed is likely to have.

However, purchasing a purebred is not a guarantee of good health and temperament. The only thing the “papers” from purebred dog and cat registry organizations certify is that there is information regarding the lineage and identity of the pet. Purebred papers are also not an assurance that your pet will be exactly like his breed profile.

Benefits of shelter adoption
Shelters want to be sure that the adoption is permanent, so they will provide lots of support in the adoption process. Shelter counselors will assist you in determining which type or breed will be best for your family’s lifestyle. Many shelters also provide follow-up assistance, such as pet parenting and dog-training classes, medical services, and behavior counseling. If you prefer, they can refer you to providers of these services.

Shelter adoption fees vary, but are much less than a breeder’s or retail pet store’s purchase price. Additionally, if you adopt your pet from a shelter, he has most likely already been vaccinated, dewormed, and spayed or neutered, saving you hundreds of dollars in veterinary expenses. A growing number of shelters now microchip pets as well.

Try a breed rescue group
An excellent source of purebred animals is a breed rescue group. These organizations are usually run by local or national breed clubs, or dedicated individuals who are advocates for a particular breed.

Good rescuers will try to match each applicant with the appropriate dog, so be ready to answer a lot of questions about your home and lifestyle. Most rescue groups require an application to be completed by potential adopters before even meeting a pet.

In general, rescue dogs are more than six months old and are housetrained. They often end up as rescues because families were not prepared for the temperament or care of the particular type of pet. Many dogs are placed in rescue when their original owners are unable to care for them due to financial or lifestyle change or illness.

Adoption strategy
If you decide to adopt from a shelter or rescue, don’t be surprised or discouraged if there are no animals available on your first visit. Speak with a counselor about your choice of pet, and have your name put on a waiting list. The shelter will call you when an animal matching your preference becomes available.

To learn more about purebred rescue, visit the AKC website at Petfinder ( also features a searchable database of over 100,000 animals that need homes from over 5,000 animal shelters and adoption organizations across the USA and Canada. Your local Best Friends center also works closely with neighborhood rescue associations, and would gladly put you in touch with these organizations.