If you feel calmer and happier around your four-legged friend, you’re not alone. Many studies have shown that our pets can provide more than just snuggles and kisses. They actually do wonders to our mental health.
This World Mental Health Day, we shine the light on the furry members of our family. They’re always there for us, and we often feel they know when we’re feeling sad or upset. When we’re overwhelmed and having a rough time, they give us extra love and compassion.
The therapeutic power of the human-bond is a deep connection that knows no bounds. We become each others’ confidant, listener, and most loyal friend. We’re pleased to share stories that beautifully illustrate how sometimes the most profound healing can come from four-legged friends.
“It’s been a rough year. Leaving a relationship of 9 years wasn’t easy for me or the boys. I had to reconfigure from what I was used to for 9 years, on top of juggling a career change and the launch of a side business for pet tags. I did not want to sacrifice the boys’ level of care no matter the situation. I was alone, I was tired, I wanted to scream. I suddenly had no time for myself, I couldn’t even stop to hear myself think, I felt like I was going through a mental breakdown. There wasn’t and still isn’t a day where I could admit that I needed to throw in the towel because I am not functioning right.”
“I am still struggling even after months. But though I no longer have a partner to come home to, I still had the boys who were so patient with their change of routine. Holding Hex when I can’t take it anymore and need to catch a break also helped me a lot. I lost a partner, and the boys lost a parent. Taking care of three boys as one person isn’t easy, but I don’t think I’ll be able to make it this far without them giving me the drive and comfort, as well as my three good friends from within the cat community.”
“At the start of the covid pandemic and just before lockdown, I was already suffering from anxiety and depression as we were previously living in quite a depressing city. A colleague who knew about my mental health recommended getting a cat to keep me company at home, and showed me videos of Princess (then Tallulah) at the shelter. Talking to my therapist, we agreed that adopting a cat will definitely help with my mental well-being, but only if I was sure I could properly care for her and not cause additional stress and anxiety for myself. I met Princess and immediately fell in love.”
“Having Princess at home helped establish a routine both for me and her. Feeding, playtime, etc, even down to cleaning her litter box. She gave me purpose – to give her the best life she could have. Throughout lockdown, I never experienced cabin fever like I thought I would because I had Princess around all the time. I knew friends who were desperate to go out, but I just wanted to stay in and spend time with my baby girl.”
These are just a few of the countless stories on how our furry friends can give inspiration, hope, and a renewed sense of purpose. And in the hustle and bustle of life, it’s quite easy to forget that our furry companions are not just pets. In their presence, we have peace and a refuge from the battles we silently face.
Our furry friends are truly the unsung heroes of our lives, giving love and comfort that words alone could never express. They remind us that healing happens in many forms. And that sometimes, it comes in four paws, wrapped in fur, and filled with boundless affection.
If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues, please do not hesitate to seek help from a qualified mental health professional or a trusted healthcare provider. There is hope, support, and healing waiting for you.