Library: Health Benefits of Animals for Adults

Updated: 01/23/2013 (*denotes newest articles)


Physiological Effects of the Use of a Companion Animal Dog as a Cue to Relaxation in Diagnosed Hypertensives. Sue Todd Schuelke, et al. Reprinted with Permission from The Latham Letter, Winter 1991/92, [The Latham Foundation, Latham Plaza Building, Clement and Schiller Street, Alameda, CA 9450l.]

Does Pet Ownership Reduce Your Risk for Heart Disease? Originally published in InterActions, Vol. 10, No. 3, 1992, pp 12-13.

What You Already Knew - Fluffy & Fido Are Good for You. Maria Kale. Originally published in InterActions, Vol. 10, No. 1, 1992.

The Role of Pets in Enhancing Human Well-Being: Physiological Effects. Erika Friedmann [Reprinted from The Waltham Book of Human-Animal Interactions: Benefits and Responsibilities. Courtesy of Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition.

Psychological Health in a Population of Australian Cat Owners. Cheryl M. Straede and G. Richard Gates. Originally published in Anthrozoos, Vol. 6, No. 1, 1993, pps 30-41.

Evidence for Long Term Effects of Pet Ownership on Human Health. J.A. Serpell.


* Are the Presence of Pets or the Presence of Partners Associated with Better Moods During People’s Daily Lives?

Erika Friedmann1, Sue Thomas1, Sandra McCune2
1University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
2Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, UK.

* Older and Younger Adults Make Different Attributions for Interactions with Animals and

Robots.  Matthew Chin1, Valerie Sims1, Heather Lum2, Shane Halse1, Ashley Carter1
1University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL, USA.
2Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, Erie, PA, USA.

* Olfactory Detection of Prostate Cancer by Dogs. Girardet, Caroline; Cornu, Jean-Nicholas; Cussenot, Olivier. Journal of Veterinary Behavior. 2012 Jan-Feb; 7(1); 55-55.

* Pet Ownership and Cardiovascular Risk Reduction: Supporting Evidence, Conflicting Data and Underlying Mechanisms. Arhant-Sudhir, Kanish; Arhant-Sudhir, Rish; Sudhir, Krishnankutty. Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology. 2011 Nov; 38(11): 734-738.

* Physical Activity, Weight Status, and Neighborhood Characteristics of Dog Walkers. Coleman, Karen J.; Rosenberg, Dori E.; Conway, Terry L.; Sallis, James F.; Saelens, Brian E.; Frank, Lawrence D.; Cain, Kelli. Preventive Medicine. 2008 Sep; 47(3): 309-312.

* Preliminary Investigation of Employee's Dog Presence on Stress and Organizational Perceptions. Barker, Randolph T.; Knisley, Janet S.; Barker, Sandra B.; Cobb, Rachel K.; Schubert, Christine M. International Journal of Workplace Health Management. 2012; 5(1): 15–30.

* "They're There for You": Men's Relationships with Companion Animals. Risley-Curtiss, Christina; Holley, Lynn C.; Kodiene, Sulamita. Families in Society. 2011 Oct-Dec; 93(4): 412-418.

* Effects of Presence of a Familiar Pet Dog on Regional Cerebral Activity in healthy volunteers: A Positron Emission Tomography Study. Sugawara, Akihiro; Masud, Mohammad Mehedi; Yokoyama, Akimitsu; Mizutani, Wataru; Watanuki, Shoichi; Yanai, Kazuhiko; Itoh, Masatoshi; Tashiro, Manabu. Anthrozoös. 2012 Mar; 25(1): 25-34.

* Does Getting a Dog Increase Recreational Walking? Cutt, Hayley E.; Knuiman, Matthew W.; Giles-Corti, Billie. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2008 Mar 27; 5: 17 (10 pages).

* The Co-Occurrence of Homelessness in People and their Companion Animals. Kim, Christine. 2012.

* Confrontations and Donations: Encounters Between Homeless Pet Owners and the Public. Irvine, Leslie; Kahl, Kristina N.; Smith, Jesse M. Sociological Quarterly. 2012 Winter; 53(1): 25-43.

* A Comparison of Empathy for Humans and Empathy for Animals. Angantyr, Malin; Eklund, Jakob; Hansen, Eric M. Anthrozoös. 2011 Dec; 24(4): 369-377.

Short-Term Interaction Between Dogs and Their Owners:   Effects on Oxytocin, Cortisol, Insulin and Heart Rate – An Exploratory Study. Handlin, Linda; Hydbring-Sandberg, Eva; Nilsson, Anne; Ejdebäck, Mikael; Jansson, Anna; Uvnäs-Moberg, Kerstin. Anthrozoös. 2011 Sep; 24(3): 301-315.

Pets, Depression and Long-Term Survival in Community Living Patients Following Myocardial Infarction. Friedmann, Erika; Thomas, Sue A.; Son, Heesook; for the HAT Investigators. Anthrozoös. 2011 Sep; 24(3): 273-285.

The Impact of Dog Walking on Leisure-Time Physical Activity:  Results From a Population-Based Survey of Michigan Adults. Reeves, Mathew J.; Rafferty, Ann P.; Miller, Corinne E.; Lyon-Callo, Sarah K. Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 2011 Mar; 8(3): 436-444.

Dog Walking: Its Association with Physical Activity Guideline Adherence and Its Correlates. Hoerster, Katherine D.; Mayer, Joni A.; Sallis, James F.; Pizzi, Nicole; Talley, Sandra; Pichon, Latrice C.; Butler, Dalila A. Preventive Medicine. 2011 Jan; 52(1): 33-38.

An Examination Of The Potential Role Of Pet Ownership, Human Social Support And Pet Attachment In The Psychological Health Of Individuals Living Alone. Duvall Antonacopoulos, Nikolina M.; Pychyl, Timothy A. Anthrozoös. 2010 Mar; 23(1): 37-54.

Homeless Women's Voices On Incorporating Companion Animals Into Shelter Services. Labrecque, Jennifer; Walsh, Christine A. Anthrozoös. 2011 Mar; 24(1): 79-95.

Our New Children: The Surrogate Role of Companion Animals in Women’s Lives. Turner, W.G. Qualitative Report, 6(1) 2001 Mar: (8 pages).

Reasons for Companion Animal Guardianship (Pet Ownership) From Two Populations. Staats, S.; Wallace, H.; Anderson, T. Society & Animals, 2008; 16(3): 279-291.

Young Adults’ Attachment to Pet Dogs: Findings From Open-Ended Methods. Kurdek, L.A. Anthrozoös, 2009 Dec; 22(4): 359-369.

Dog Ownership, Walking Behavior, and Maintained Mobility in Late Life. Thorpe, R.J, Jr.; Simonsick, E.M.; Brach, J.S.; Ayonayon, H.;Satterfield, S.; Harris, T.B.; Garcia, M.; Kritchevsky, S. B. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 2006 Sep; 54(9): 1419-1424.

Associations Between Pet Ownership and Self-Reported Health Status in People Suffering From Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Wells, D.L. Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine, 2009 Apr; 15(4): 407-413.

Are Pets a Source of Support or Added Burden for Married Couples Facing Dementia? Connell, C.M.; Janevic, M.R.; Solway, E.; McLaughlin, S.J. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 2007 Nov; 26(5): 472-485.

Another Breed of “Service” Animals: STARS Study Findings About Pet Ownership and Recovery from Serious Mental Illness. Wisdom, J.P.; Saedi, G. A.; Green, Carla A. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. 2009 Jul; 79(3): 430-436

Changes in Automatic Nervous Activity Before and After Horse Trekking Measured by Heart Rate Variability and Salivary Amylase Activity, Akihiro Matsuura, Nozomi Nagai, Aki Funatsu, Atusi Yamazaki, Koichi Hodate. Department of Animal Science, Kitasato University, Japan.[Presentation from the 11th International Conference on Human-Animal Interactions, People & Animals: Partnership in Harmony, Tokyo, Japan, October 5-8, 2008]

Romantic Partners and Four-Legged Friends: An Extension of Attachment Theory to Relationships with Pets. Beck, L., Madresh, E. A., Anthrozoos, 21 (1) 2008: 43-56.
Dogs: A Potential Public Health Role to Improve Health and Well-Being . Upton, V. The SCAS Journal, 2005 Autumn; 17(3):2-5. 

Relation Between Pet Ownership and Heart Rate Variability in Patients with Healed Myocardial Infarcts . Friedmann, E., Thomas S.A., Stein, P.K., Kleiger, R.E. Am J Cardiol. 2003 Mar 15; 91(6):718-21.

Lung Transplant Recipients Holding Companion Animals: Impact on Physical Health and Quality of LIfe, S. Irani, C. Mahler, L. Goetzmann, EW Russi, and A. Boehler - New! on July 12, 2006

Pet Attachment and Personality Type, D. Bagley and V. Gonsman - New! on July 12, 2006

Effect of Petting a Dog on Immune System Function, C.J. Charnetski; S. Riggers; F.X. Brennan - New! on July 31, 2006

Spouses and Cats and Their Effects on Human Mood, D. Turner, G. Rieger, and L. Gygax - New! on July 12, 2006

The Role of Pets in the Support Networks of People Recovering from Breast Cancer. June McNicholas, Glyn M. Collis, Chris Kent & Michelle Rogers. New! 

Dog Ownership and Control of Borderline Hypertension: A Controlled Randomized Trial. K. Allen. 

Pet Ownership, But Not ACE Inhibitor Therapy Blunts Home Blood Pressure Response to Mental Stress. K. Allen, J.L. Izzo, and B.E. Shykoff.

Dogs as Catalysts for Social Interactions: Robustness of the Effect. J. McNicholas and G.M. Collis.

AIDS Diagnosis and Depression in the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study: The Ameliorating Impact of Pet Ownership. J.M. Siegel, F.J. Angulo, R. Detels, J. Wesch, and A. Mullen.

Social Support and Resting Blood Pressure Among Young and Elderly Women: The Moderating Role of Pet Dogs and Cats. K. Allen, A. Gross, and J. Izzo, Jr. 

Anger and Hostility Among Married Couples: Pet Dogs as Moderators of Cardiovascular Reactivity Stress. K. Allen and J. Blascovich.

Animals and Cardiovascular Health. G.L. Jennings.

Loneliness and Pet Ownership Among Single Women. R.L. Zasloff and A.H. Kidd

Presence of Human Friends and Pet Dogs as Moderators of Autonomic Responses to Stress in Women. K. Allen, J. Blascovich, J. Tomaka, and R. Kelsey.

Companion Animals as Self Objects. Brown, S. Anthrozoos, 20 (4) 2007: 329-343.

Parrots as Therapy for Psychiatric Patients. Haw, C. Psychiatric Bulletin, 31(4) 2007 Apr:154-5.

Animal-Assisted Therapy in Cardiovascular Disease. Wolff, A. I., Frishman, W. H. Seminars in Integrative Medicine, 2(4) 2004 Dec: 131-4.

The Pet Connection: Pets as a Conduit for Social Capital? Wood, L. J., Giles-Corti, G., Bulsara, M., Social Science & Medicine 61(6) 2005 ep: 1159-73.

Understanding Dog Owners’ Increased Levels of Physical Activity: Results from RESIDE. Cutt, Hayley; Giles-Corti, Billie; Knuiman, Matthew; Timperio, Anna; Bull, Fiona. American Journal of Public Health, 2008 Jan; 98(1): 66-69.

Pet Dogs Benefit Owners’ Health: A ‘Natural Experiment’ in China. Headey, Bruce; Na, Fu; Zheng, Richard. Social Indicators Research, 2008; 84: 481-493.

In the Company of Wolves: The Physical, Social, and Psychological Benefits of Dog Ownership. Knight, Sarah; Edwards, Victoria. [Journal of Aging and Health, 2008 Jun; 20(4): 437-455. Correspondence to Knight, Department of Psychology, University of Portsmouth, King Henry Building, King Henry I Street, Portsmouth, PO1 2DY, UK;

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