How Pets Can Support a Life of Sobriety

Pets can support your sobriety! Feeling a strong connection with a pet is so rewarding in early recovery. Pets are known for improving our mental, physical, and social well-being. That is why pets are often used in rehabilitative settings, including here at Awakenings Treatment Center. If you are thinking about adopting a pet, there are many wonderful benefits to consider!

How Pets Support a Healthy Recovery

According to The Human Animal Bond Research Institute, 74 percent of pet owners say pets improve their mental health. Here are some reasons why this is the case:

Pets teach responsible behaviors

As you recover from addiction, you must learn how to live a sober, responsible life. Part of this includes paying bills, preparing healthy meals, and maintaining a home. A pet can help you adopt these healthy habits early on. If you feel you are not ready for these responsibilities, continuing with an intensive outpatient drug rehab can teach you essential life skills.

Pets help people form social connections

Pets, especially dogs, can help bridge the gap between you and other people. Not only will you have something to talk about, but also plenty of places to go. Dogs need to be walked and taken to the vet. They also enjoy visiting dog parks and attending doggy daycare. All these activities get you outside the home and around other people.

Pets reduce anxiety and depression

By owning a pet, you are less likely to suffer from anxiety and depression. Research shows pet owners have lower levels of cortisol and increased levels of oxytocin, a happy hormone. After all, you can’t deny the unconditional love that cats and dogs give. Your pet won’t mind if you’re having a bad day. No judgment here.

Pets give a sense of purpose

Are you struggling to find your greater purpose in life? Many people find meaning by exploring the things that are important to them. Taking care of a pet or volunteering at an animal shelter will get you out of bed in the mornings and motivated for something new. The feelings that come from having a purpose boost recovery and protect you from relapse.

At Awakenings Treatment Center, we can’t say enough good things about pets! Pets are important for your sobriety and an important part of our treatment center here in Agoura Hills. To learn more about our intensive outpatient program and how we support a life of sobriety, contact us today.