Are children afraid of pets?

Dogs as pets take away fear from children

01.02.2016

Children who grow up with pets have fewer symptoms of anxiety. This is the result of a recent American study. According to this, having a dog as a family member reduces anxiety in children.

The researchers studied nearly 650 children aged 18 months and over (an average of 6.7 years). 58% of the children had a dog at home.

Only 12% of children with dogs as pets showed symptoms of anxiety when tested, compared with 21% without dogs, according to researchers at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown, NY. The study was published in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease.

With a dog, a child can lose fear - especially social and separation anxiety. A dog offers many possibilities for this, e.g. as a magnet for others and an occasion for conversations, dogs help to break the ice, the researchers suspect. However, they have not been able to prove a cause-and-effect relationship with their scientific work.

"Having a friendly dog ‚Äč‚Äčalso lowers cortisol levels, presumably through the release of oxytocin, which in turn reduces physiological responses to stress," the experts wrote. AAT: animal assisted therapy) explain with dogs. "

Source: HealthDay, Preventing Chronic Disease