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The Curious Secrets of a Long Life

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Being a woman. Eating dark chocolate (but not binging on it, of course). Flossing regularly. This short video sums it up nicely:


One of the things mentioned towards the end of the video is owning pets. It wouldn't be the first time I've heard about the value of pet ownership. Simply petting a dog or cat can help reduce stress (It's why airports are testing out therapy dogs to help relax harried passengers www.huffingtonpost.com/2
). Taking the dog out for a walk adds movement to your day. There are studies that show pets can help with anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders. ( www.mentalhelp.net/poc/v

Meet My Home Therapy: Seamus, a one year old cat, and Joey, a six year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

There are some days where I just don't believe the research. I haven't found any specific studies regarding pets and binge eating disorder, but sometimes I feel more tied to the house than I should be because my puppy needs a companion, and I'm more likely to have out-of-control moments around food when I'm at home vs. when I'm out. There's certainly stress with pet ownership, too:

finding pet-sitters when we need to go out of town for an extended period of time;
the frequent need to clean up pet hair and muddy paw prints;
rushing home when we are out and about to make sure the dog gets outside; and
the constant battles to make sure the cat stays off our eating spaces (tables, counters, etc.)

We're definitely losing the war on that last bullet. This past weekend, we were heading out for the day to visit my husband's mom for mother's day - a nice outing for us, because she likes when we bring Joey to her house. We planned to get a good gym workout in the morning before leaving. I packed up everything we'd need to take with us to his mom's ahead of time so that we could quickly pick up the dog and leave after our workout. This included putting a little baggie together of Joey's dinner and a few treats so that we could feed him while we were out and about, and could make sure any family dogs we encountered that day could share in Joey's treats. I left everything we'd need on the counter, and headed out for the gym.

When my husband and I returned from the gym roughly an hour later, an empty bag awaited us on the floor - next to a pile of dog poop. So we know *who* ate the food, but Joey sure as heck isn't jumping on any counters. I wonder what kind of planning went into this conspiracy, as I'm not sure what was in it for the cat. He's not really into Joey's food. On the bright side - at least they didn't eat the bag. Or the pile of chocolate chip cookies ( wp.me/p1N36Q-7O ) we had baked for Ben's mom.

Anyway, pets really are like your children, I guess. The good generally outweighs the bad. Can't stay mad at something this cute.

They look so innocent, don't they?
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