The bond between a pet and its fellow human is truly amazing. Nothing quite beats the feeling of snuggling up to your loving, cozy, furry friend at the end of a long day. But, those cuddles and belly rubs are not just fun – they can also have multiple health benefits! When it comes to giving us emotional support, our dogs are always there for us. However, some people need a little extra care from their pets, especially if they suffer from depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues. That’s where emotional support dogs come in! While any dog with the right temperament can be trained to be an emotional support dog, there are some breeds that are better suited to the role than others. Learn which dogs make the best emotional support companions and why!
Pets and Mental Health
If you are a dog owner, have you ever noticed feeling happier and more at ease around your pup? That’s not a coincidence. People with pets tend to experience a myriad of mental health benefits thanks to their furry companions. So, it’s no surprise that dogs are increasingly serving as emotional support animals. The numerous physical and mental health benefits of owning a pet have been proven by many scientific studies. Animals can help with depression, anxiety, and stress, as well as provide companionship and ease loneliness, thus bringing us joy and unconditional love.
Best pets for mental health
While all pets are adorable, sometimes we just need extra support. Dogs often prove to be the best pets for emotional support, as they come with numerous mental health benefits including stress and anxiety reduction, a boost in self-esteem, improved social connections, proven to help with loneliness, and depression.
Best small pets for depression
An amazing variety of tiny creatures make good therapy pets: “pocket pets” like ferrets, birds, and reptiles are therapeutic for people, especially children who struggle with any disability – physical, behavioral, and developmental.
What Is the Best Emotional Support Animal?
Emotional support animals, also known as ESAs, are trained to provide comfort and relief from the symptoms of certain emotional disorders. They provide therapeutic benefits to people through companionship. A variety of animals have become ESAs, but dogs most frequently assume the role. Not only do they make the best pets, but they’re also absolute legends with the ability to support people struggling with mental issues. But, when it comes to affectionate dog breeds, we don’t just mean puppy dog eyes. Best emotional support animals are highly intelligent dogs that can be trained to handle unique mental health situations, helping their owners manage symptoms of anxiety, depression, and panic attacks.
What kind of dog is best for emotional support?
While all dogs offer an emotional connection, not all can provide emotional support. Any breed of dog can be an emotional support animal with the right training and disposition. But, there are a few dog breeds that are naturally prone to the affection and devotion required to be an emotional support dog. Read on to find out which ones are best suited for the job!
Best Dogs for Emotional Support
As we all seek to foster a sense of inner peace, emotional support dogs are growing more and more popular. While all dogs can offer support, certain breeds have traits that make them more likely to excel in the role – they tend to be naturally gentle, laid-back, and sociable, as well as highly trainable. Here are 7 breeds that make the best emotional support dogs!
The Labrador Retriever is arguably the most empathic breed of dog, with an innate skill to know how their owners are feeling. They are gentle, friendly, and eager to please, making wonderful therapy dogs.
Their patient demeanors and overt friendliness make them a good fit for people with health issues. Matched with their intelligence, Golden retrievers are incredibly easy to train, making them one of the best emotional support dogs.
Even-tempered, stable, and obedient, Corgis make wonderful guide dogs since they have a strong instinct for picking up on their owners’ emotions and helping them accordingly.
Thanks to their sensitive nature, Poodles can often pick up on the moods of people they’re close to. Their high level of intelligence means they’re also very easy to train – a valuable quality in an emotional support dog.
Craving human contact, the Yorkie is a calming companion you can carry around with you – perfect for when you need a spunky and confident sidekick to help you navigate social situations that make you feel uneasy.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
This breed is nicknamed ‘the comforter spaniel’ due to their habit of curling up on their owner’s lap for hours. Spaniels are mellow, quiet and low-energy dogs. They’re also very low maintenance, meaning that if you have mental difficulties that limit your activities, this breed makes great emotional support dogs.
Pugs make great emotional support dogs due to their warm, kind-hearted nature and ability to establish a powerful connection with their owners. Though they may be small, Pugs have a big heart and excellent intuition, meaning your pup will be able to sense when you need some extra love and support.
Best emotional support dogs for anxiety
A little bit of anxiety is good – it helps us stay alert. A lotta bit of anxiety? Not so much. If you’re looking for a healthy way to manage anxiety or emotional distress – get an emotional support dog! The best dogs for people with anxiety will help their owners feel more confident, calm, and able to cope with stressful situations.
Best dogs for anxiety
While every dog is an individual, the following breeds (along with other breeds mentioned above) are generally considered some of the best dogs for anxiety – these canines are especially well-suited for reducing stress and providing comfort.
- French Bulldog
- Golden Retriever
- The Great Pyrenees
- Great Dane
- Border Collie
Dogs are pretty amazing, right? Not only do they make the best pets, but they’re also absolute superheroes with the ability to comfort and support people struggling with mental issues. Whatever dog breed you choose as your emotional support animal, may it be a source of constant support and comfort for many years to come, while you return the love and care with ImmunoPet
Jack was born and educated in Ireland and U.K. He has a varied education, mostly in engineering projects. Since then he has worked with a number of major companies with interests in various parts of the world. His personal interests include athletics, cross country skiing and especially long distance running. Jack has competed in many running events and some at an international level, including many marathons. He has always had a keen interest in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. More recently he has specialized in the areas of health and supplements, with a special focus on the immune system.