Heart dog

For once, the American Heart Association is actually saying something I agree with.

The AHA released this rare gem of a statement a couple of weeks ago now. In it, they assert that pet ownership is linked to lower rates of heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.

And it seems dog ownership is particularly heart healthy. In fact, the AHA cited a study of more than 5,200 adults that showed dog owners were more than 50 percent more likely to be physically active.

But pets of any kind can pack a punch against stress, depression, and isolation. So it’s hardly surprising that having a four-legged friend around the house might help you live longer.

Of course, the AHA is quick to point out that pet adoption isn’t ironclad insurance against heart problems. It simply reduces a few of the major risk factors.

Still, it’s cool to see a few of man’s best friends get the credit they really deserve.

I know I go out of my way to make sure my dog Remington stays fit and healthy. Looks like I’ve just been returning the favor.

Pets may help cut heart disease risk: American Heart Association. Reuters. 9 May 2013.