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Pets: Making the World Healthier Once House at a Time Special points of interest:  Heart-warming stories about pets helping people during their toughest times  Facts you didn't know about your pets  Facts and statistics that will make you take a trip to the pet store  The miraculous capabilities pets had that you had no idea about

Inside this issue: All About Animals Puzzle


Furry Friends Relieving our Stress


Did you Know?


The Cure to Cancer is a Sniff Away!


Vi, the Seeing Eye Dog


Prison Pet Partnerships




November 24, 2009

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Man’s Best Friend Becomes Man’s Savior The pet population nationwide, only counting cats a dogs, has grown by over 120 million in the past 40 years. {5} There have always been studies and research on how pets can affect a person’s health, however just recently these studies have grown and developed to suggest that having pets can help to improve a person’s cardiovascular health. {5} Just recently there was an National Institute of Health (NIH)-funded study that looked at 421 adults who had suffered from heart attacks. {5} Scientists discovered that one

year later, the dogthose with no pets. {5} owners of the group Pet owners also apwere more likely to still peared to have a faster be alive than those who recovery from stress did not have a dog, rewhen with their pets gardless of the severity rather than with their of the heart attack. {5} friend or spouse. {5} A differSeveral other student study ies have shown that looked at dog owners get 240 marmore exercise, are ried coumore physically ples. {5} active, and are less Those likely to be obese, who because they walk owned a their pets regularly. pet for the most part {5} had lower heart rates A husband and wife out and blood getting exercise by walking their four-legged friend. pressure, while under a lot of stress or in a relaxed state, than

Animal-assisted Therapy Jasmine was a dog that belonged to a young boy who knew from the moment he met her that he wanted her to be a therapy dog. {3} He exposed Jasmine to all sorts of situations with mall, parks, other dogs, children in stroll-

ers, etc. {3} One day they were walking through a hospital and passed an elderly woman who was clearly agitated, accompanied by a nurse. {3} They walked in and the nurse put Jasmine on the bed. {3} The

woman immediately sat up and hugged Jasmine, talked with her, rocked her back and forth and stroked her back until the woman fell asleep. {3} That is when the nurse told the boy that this woman was deeply agitated and nobody and nothing could get her to sleep until Jasmine. {3}

Pets: Making the World Healthier

Inside Story Headline

Caption describing picture or graphic.

“Simply watching a fish tank versus a bare wall for 30 minutes lowers blood pressure significantly�

Who Knew our Furry Friends Could Relieve Stress? Owning a cat or dog can make you healthier by improving your mood, encouraging exercise, helping with social support, and providing you with a friend and unconditional love. {1} There was a recent study that showed that men with AIDS were less likely to show symptoms of depression if they had a

pet. {1} Pets also encourage exercise, whether it is walking a dog because they need it or that people generally enjoy walking more when they have companionship, pet owners are for the most part in better shape than non-pet owners. {1} Whether it is a dog, cat, guinea pig, bunny, horse or snake, having a pet is

like having a friend that will always be there to keep you company. {1} Last but not least, a test was run that found that when conducting a task that is stress related, people react better and cope with their stress better when their pets were with them than when a friend or spouse was there. {1}

Did you Know? -In the United States, 63 percent of households own at least one pet {2} -In one study, patients who spent a short amount of time with a dog before upcoming treatment operation experienced a 37 % reduction in their anxiety levels {2}

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-Simply watching a fish tank versus a bare wall for 30 minutes lowers blood pressure significantly {2} -97 % of pet owners talk to their pets {2} -A group of patients suffering from depression who participated in daily water exercises with dolphins saw significant improvements over a

A man with a wide smile spending time with his cheerful pup

group who performed the same exercises without dolphins. {2}

The Cure to Cancer Could be a Sniff Away Ovarian cancer kills twothirds of the 22,000 women diagnosed with it each year. {6} The reason it kills so many people is because it is usually caught after it has spread beyond the ovaries, and at that point there is very little hope. {6} The Pine Street Foundation, a cancer education and research center in San Anselmo, California, has high hopes to one day train dogs to sniff out earlystage ovarian cancer.{6} In 2006 the foundation

suggested through a study that it was possible to train dogs to, through a breath sample, sniff out which patients had lung cancer and which had breast cancer. {6} Now, all that the scientists need to do is figure out “what collection of molecules are unique to ovarian caner, pancreatic cancer, and lung cancer, and develop a test to find those.” {6} Diabetes is also detectable. {6} Scientists and still perfecting the study, but they know that when

one’s blood sugar drops, the body sends out certain chemicals through the breath, which dogs could learn to detect.{6}

The wet snout of a dog ready to sniff out cancer and save millions

Vi, the Seeing Eye Dog The Children’s Inn is a place to house sick children dealing with diseases such as cancer, HIV and heart, lung and bone disorders. {9} The spokeswoman of the inn explains how she believes that having a livein pet “gives the kids the opportunity to forget about the pokes, prods and needles they receive

when they're in the hospital." {9} Vi is a retired seeing-eye dog that was donated to the Children’s Inn as their first live-in dog. {9} For such a sick child, bonding with a pet the way that these children have an opportunity to do, has several benefits. {9} "There are many studies showing that pet therapy is one of

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the different avenues outside traditional care that can aid in healing," states the co-founder and coordinator of a pediatric program at the National Cancer Institute. {9} No matter how sick any of the children are, Vi never fails to put a smile on their face. {9}

“In 2006 the foundation suggested through a study that it was possible to train dogs to, through a breath sample, sniff out which patients had lung cancer and which had breast cancer.”

Prison Pet Partnerships In 1981, a program was started called the Prison Pet Partnerships and it began at the Washington prison. The idea of the program is that inmates train and care for service and guide dogs to assist the blind and disabled. {7} More than 600 dogs have joined the program since it began. {7} The released inmates who trained and took part in the program have an

extremely low rate of recidivism, only one inmate has ever had to return to the prison. {7}

Training the dogs, for the inmates, teaches and practices the values of hard work, kindness, consistency and love. {7} Pets of any kind can bring the best values to even the worst people, and everyone should be amazing at the wonders they achieve.

Several jail inmates training and bonding with their four-legged friends

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Bibliography Organization

1. Stress Management. Elizabeth Scott. Web. 17 Nov. 2009. <http://


2. How Stuff Works. Jennifer Horton. Web. 21 Nov. 2009. <

MICDS Annabelle Cella 26 Thorndell Dr. St. Louis, Missouri 63117 Phone: 314-277-0995 E-mail:

human-nature/emotions/ happiness/science/pets-happiness.htm/printable>. 3. Love on 4 Paws Animal Assisted Therapy. 2009. Web. 15 Nov. 2009<http://>. 4. Lubbock 31 July 2009. Print. 5. NIH News in Health. NIH, Feb. 2009. Web. 15 Nov. 2009. <http://>. 6. Ovarian Cancer National Alliance Support Communiry. 16 Aug. 2009. Web. 17 Nov.

Resources: 1.


St. Louis Humane Society 1201 Macklind Avenue



dogs-sniff-out-clues-in-the-fight-against-cancer/>. 7. Pet Web. 17 Nov. 2009. < page1.aspx>.

St. Louis, MO 63110 (314) 951-1562 2.

8. The Healing Power of Pets. 1st ed. Library of Congress-In-Publication Data, 2002. Print.


International Association of Assistance Dog Partners 38691 Filly Drive Sterling Heights, MI 48310

9. The Washington Times [Washington D.C.] 25 Dec. 2008. Print. 10. Digital image. Web. 15 Nov. 2009. < consumer_assets/site_images/article

s/healthtools/depression_overview_slideshow/ 3.


Book from the MICDS McCulloch Library Kindred Spirits: how the Remarkable Bond Between Humans and Animals can Change the way we Live by Allen M. Schoen Published New York : Broadway Books, 2002, c2001. ISBN 0-7679-0431-1 4.


http:// February/feature1.htm

getty_rf_photo_of_man_and_dog.jpg>. 11. Digital image. Web. 15 Nov. 2009. < images/5F55B283E1AF4EC997


12. Digital image. Web. 15 Nov. 2009. < horse_dog_cat.jpg>. 13. Digital image. Web. 17 Nov. 2009. < BuildWordSearch.asp>. 14. Digital image. Web. 17 Nov. 2009. <>. 15 Digital image. Web. 17 Nov. 2009. < AAAAAAAABdk/phvfh C8Vt7A/s400/state+prison+Florida+inmates+group+small.jpg>.

Pets: Making the World Healthier One House at a Time  
Pets: Making the World Healthier One House at a Time  

Newsletter with stories and facts about pets and how they can make people healthier.