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Local companies encouraged to enhance employees' health and well-being through pet companionship throughout June


 

As if pet parents need another reason to boast about their beloved pets or encourage you to follow their pet on Instagram - studies have shown that pets can do more than warm your heart and your home. They also help their human companions get more exercise, may lower blood pressure and cholesterol, cut stress and boost happiness[1]. It's a win-wag combination for health and happiness.

A pet can be your heart's best friend and that's why the American Heart Association - the world's leading voluntary organization dedicated to building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke - is launching Best Friend Fridays. Every Friday in June, participating companies will open their doors to their employees' four-legged friends or schedule a group outing to a nearby green space to allow their employees to enjoy all the good that pets can do.

No bones about it - pets can be good for your heart. At home, they help you move more. At work, they help you stress less. They can even help you be more productive. Those are great reasons to high-five your furry friend. And that's why we want you to bring your pet to work for Best Friend Fridays and help us fetch funds for life-saving research and education. Donate at BestFriendFridays.heart.org. Then post a selfie of you and your pet at work. Let's lick heart disease and stroke together.

Every Friday in June 2019 - June 7, 14, 21 and 28

Ask your employer to celebrate Best Friend Fridays this June. Employees bring their pets to work and celebrate their heart's best friend by donating to the American Heart Association -- a winning combination for health and well-being!

Bring your pet to work and give in honor of your heart's best friend. Your gift will support important research and education (for humans). That's a high-five for heart health!

High Five! It's Friday! When you bring your pet to work on Best Friend Fridays, donate to the American Heart Association and post a selfie of you and your heart's best friend to spread the word using #BestFriendFridays.

And if your company does not have pets at work yet, find a park where you and your pet can meet up with other pet parents in your company! It could be a whole new way to make new friends with your best friend.

Pet companionship is important social support and a powerful predictor of behavior changes that can lead to weight loss[2]. It can also provide benefits in patients with cardiovascular disease[3].

Overall, pet parents tend to live longer than non-pet owners[4].

Dog parents are more likely to fit in the recommended level of physical activity than those who don't have a dog[5].

Two out of three employees say work stresses them out, while 40% say their job gets in the way of their health[6]. Pets at work may help reduce stress, increase productivity and improve employee satisfaction, teamwork and collaboration[7].

For more information about the American Heart Association and Best Friend Fridays, visit www.BestFriendFridays.heart.org.

[1] Glenn N. Levine, Karen Allen, Lynne T. Braun, Hayley E. Christian, Erika Friedmann, Kathryn A. Taubert, Sue Ann Thomas, Deborah L. Wells, and Richard A. Lange and on behalf of the American Heart Association Council on Clinical Cardiology and Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing. Pet Ownership and Cardiovascular Risk: A Scientific Statement From the American Heart Association. Circulation 11 Jun 2013; 127:2353-2363. Link

2 Glenn N. Levine, Karen Allen, Lynne T. Braun, Hayley E. Christian, Erika Friedmann, Kathryn A. Taubert, Sue Ann Thomas, Deborah L. Wells, and Richard A. Lange and on behalf of the American Heart Association Council on Clinical Cardiology and Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing. Pet Ownership and Cardiovascular Risk: A Scientific Statement From the American Heart Association. Circulation 11 Jun 2013; 127:2353-2363. Link

3 Glenn N. Levine, Karen Allen, Lynne T. Braun, Hayley E. Christian, Erika Friedmann, Kathryn A. Taubert, Sue Ann Thomas, Deborah L. Wells, and Richard A. Lange and on behalf of the American Heart Association Council on Clinical Cardiology and Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing. Pet Ownership and Cardiovascular Risk: A Scientific Statement From the American Heart Association. Circulation 11 Jun 2013; 127:2353-2363. Link

4 Mwenya Mubanga, Liisa Byberg, Christoph Nowak, Agneta Egenvall, Patrik K. Magnusson, Erik Ingelsson, Tove Fall. Scientific Reports volume 7, Article number: 15821 (2017) 10.1038_s41598-017-16118-6.ris. Link

5 Yu-Tzu Wu, Robert Luben, Andy Jones. Dog ownership supports the maintenance of physical activity during poor weather in older English adults: cross-sectional results from the EPIC Norfolk cohort. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health: Volume 71, Issue 9. Link

6 Steven Sauter, Lawrence Murphy, Michael Colligan, Naomi Swanson, Joseph Hurrell, Jr., Frederick Scharf, Jr., Raymond Sinclair, Paula Grubb, Linda Goldenhar, Toni Alterman, Janet Johnston, Anne Hamilton, Julie Tisdale. STRESS ...AT WORK; National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Link

7 Human Animal Bond Research Institute Link

 
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