Pets are a good option as a companion for adults and children with ADHD. They can love unconditionally, enjoy going with you everywhere, and socialize with other humans and other pets. Because of this, they are the perfect companions for individuals with ADHD.
If you have ever owned a pet, you know that they have the power to lighten up a dreary day with just their company and you can always count on their support no matter what.
Do you want to know more about pets for individuals living with ADHD?
How does a pet help an individual with ADHD?
For people with ADHD, having a pet brings many benefits to their physical and emotional health. Take man’s best friend as an example.
1. Dogs help reduce stress in people with ADHD
If we evaluate the difficulties that people with ADHD face at school, at home, or at work, coupled with the lack of understanding and stigmatization, we would see that they face high levels of daily stress.
Having an affectionate companion, who is not there to judge, but to provide emotional support and company, greatly changes one’s mood. Just contact with an animal reduces stress and increases the release of serotonin, helping the individual to have positive feelings.
2. Pets promote social interaction
People with ADHD often have difficulty with social interaction. Low self-esteem, fear of saying or doing something inappropriate, or being rejected, isolate them from the environment they are in.
Walking your dog is the perfect opportunity to start conversations with other animal lovers and to learn to relate to others based on commonalities. These positive interactions may decrease the anxiety around socialization and gradually increase self-confidence.
3. Pets give structure
Pets help give structure to children and adults with ADHD.
Having a pet requires responsibility and commitment. Your animal needs basic care that includes feeding, walking, physical activity, monthly bathing, and scheduled visits to the vet to take care of its health.
Little by little their loving reminders will help you to improve in the planning and execution of tasks related to their routine and your own.
4. Pets help drain energy
To fulfill this function, a pet must have a medium-high energy level, so it is important to consider this aspect if one of your goals is to have an adventure companion.
Whether you like hiking or prefer to go running around the neighborhood, when you have a dog, you have a faithful companion who will enjoy all your proposals for outdoor fun.
What kind of pet can I have if I have ADHD?
We have mentioned dogs as an example because of their intelligence and because these noble species are trained to assist people living with disabilities or those who require special care.
Other people prefer cats for the independence that characterizes felines. Although less demanding, they are a very affectionate species and faithful to their owners.
To find your ideal pet, you can answer the following questions: How much time do you have to take care of it, and do you need it to be independent in some way? Are you looking for a pet just for company and emotional support or do you also want an adventure partner? Are you more into cats than dogs or do you prefer another pet such as a reptile or hamster?
Regardless of the type of pet you choose, you should know that pets become a member of the family and they have feelings and require care. Treat it in the best way, and remember that it has come to make your life better.
Animo Sano Psychiatry is open for patients in North Carolina. If you’d like to schedule an appointment, please contact us.