Having a Cat Might Actually Improve Your Mental Health

Owning a cat surely has many benefits: a companion, a playmate and even just a cute face to come home to day in and day out. These sweet little creatures provide their humans with comfort and even aid in their physical health. ┬áBut did you know that having a cat just might improve your overall ┬ámental health? If you don’t already own a cat, this just may persuade you to get one!

Here are some ways owning a cat might actually improve your state of mind:

– Petting reduces stress. Not only is petting your cat beneficial to them, it also works wonders for you. It’s a way to connect with your kitty and, scientifically, the hormone related to stress/anxiety relief, oxytocin, is released. Oxytocin helps in lowering cortisol levels as well as reduces your blood pressure.

– Your cat lessens loneliness. Living alone can get quite lonely, which is why many people look to having a cat around. With your feline around, you’ll always have a companion. Cats have a great sense of intuition as well: when you’re feeling down, your cat can sense it and will automatically approach you and cuddle, never leaving you alone.

– They make you smile. Cats are no strangers to doing hilarious and crazy things, causing even the most straight-faced person to break into a smile. Smiling releases serotonin and dopamine levels, which are associated with happiness.

– Cats make great listeners. With cats, they’re all ears. You can spill your heart and innermost feelings to them and not only will they never utter a word, they will listen to everything. They also won’t judge you on anything you say – cats are guaranteed to have your back!

– They love you unconditionally. Like the Katy Perry song, your furry feline friend will always love you unconditionally. It’s a sweet truth, and with that in mind, you can’t help but be happy knowing someone loves you. They don’t ask for much, either – just for you to love them back.

Photo by Afton Almaraz/Getty Images

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