As many of us realize, dogs are not just beneficial to our mental and emotional well being. Researchers have long known that having a dog in the house lowers a child’s risk of asthma and allergies, but a new study in Finland shows wider-ranging benefits to infants. Researchers studied almost 400 babies and found that those raised in dog-owning homes required fewer treatments for a variety of ailments:
For example, infants with no dog contact at home were healthy for 65 percent of parents’ weekly diary reports. That compared to between 72 and 76 percent for those who had a dog at home.
Babies in dog-owning families were also 44 percent less likely to get inner ear infections and 29 percent less likely to need antibiotics.