The benefits of pet companionship in emerging adults
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SubjectPet owners - Psychology; Pets - Psychological aspects; Pets - Therapeutic use; Pets - Social aspects; Human-animal relationships; Young adults - Psychology
The present study examines the benefits associated with pet companionship in emerging adults. Past research suggests that pet companionship can have many positive impacts on individuals’ lives; however, little research has explored pet companionship during the transitional developmental period known as emerging adulthood. Three hundred and seventeen participants completed an online survey which measured five dependent variables, including loneliness, stress, life satisfaction, pet attachment, and anthropomorphism. An ANOVA indicated that participants who own and live with their pets are more likely to report lower levels of loneliness compared with those who do not own a pet. Also, t-tests revealed a significant difference in self-reported loneliness between dog and cat owners, with dog owners reporting significantly less loneliness than cat owners. Overall, the findings suggest that there are benefits to owning a pet during emerging adulthood.
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