“Love is a four-legged word.” ~Author Unknown
You’ve had a long day. Your energy is sapped; beyond what happened at work, traffic on the way home was…well, just another day in the DC area. Staggering towards the front door, you fumble for your keys. And then, as they jingle when you pull them from your pocket, you hear that glorious sound on the other side of the door.
Scratching, barking, meowing, or whatever sound your furry friend happens to make, there’s nothing quite like being greeted by a pet. They prance around with giddy abandon, wagging their tails and rubbing and pushing against our legs to be as physically close to you as they can. No matter what happened during your day, that utterly silly greeting at the door can make it all just melt away.
Animals bring such a welcoming and positive energy to our homes and our lives. We often talk in terms of how we take care of animals, but often animals help us in ways we can’t comprehend. For example, according to the National Center for Health Research, an owner simply having their dog in the same room when under stress lowered blood pressure better than taking an ACE inhibitor. And according to Mercola, married couples that own pets tend to report higher relationship satisfaction levels and reduced stress.
We buy them, birth them, and rescue them. They come into our lives sometimes by intention and sometimes by chance. But regardless of how they enter, their time with us is always significant. Even in short bursts, animals change us. They teach us how to play, how to notice the small things, and how to let go. They make us laugh until we cry, and cry until we laugh. And most of all, they teach us a different way to love. Unconditionally, brazenly, and often illogically.
They also walk across our keyboards as we’re blogging.