Life is stressful, but it turns out, one of the most rewarding ways to manage stress is to own a pet. Studies have shown pet owners have “lower heart rates and blood pressure levels and reacted better to psychological and physical stress and recovered faster from those stresses.” And these are the dog breeds with the most soothing power.
- Chihuahuas - These little guys are less than six pounds and pretty low maintenance because they don’t require much exercise and just need a sweater when it gets chilly. A chihuahua will shower you with attention and distract you from life’s stresses.
- Cocker Spaniels - These dogs are fluffy, sweet and child-friendly and Animal Planet says this breed is also good at connecting with kids dealing with mental health or emotional challenges, so stress doesn’t stand a chance.
- Corgis - According to the American Kennel Club, they’re obedient and loyal “without being needy.” And the fact they’re quick to bond with humans makes them great companion dogs for nursing home residents and people with disabilities, too.
- Dachshunds - It’s easy to ease anxiety with a playful and affectionate wiener dog.
- French Bulldogs - When you’re loving on a squishy-faced Frenchie, how could anything be wrong?
- Golden or Labrador Retrievers - Labs and Goldens are the most popular therapy, guide and rescue dogs. They’re really smart and easy to train and a joy to be around with their happy temperaments.
- Greyhounds - These gentle giants can sprint up to 35-miles per hour, but they like to lie around a lot. These dogs rarely bark and are known for being really sweet and you can’t stay stressed when a greyhound “hugs” its hundred-pound body against your legs.
- Saint Bernards - These massive teddy bears can grow to 180-pounds, but they’re not that active and only require moderate exercise. And with their soulful eyes and calm demeanors, you’ll feel more zen around them.
- Yorkies - A Yorkie became the first-ever therapy dog after Charles Mayo of the Mayo Clinic took one with him on rounds to see injured naval officers during World War II and the Yorkie lifted their spirits so much. Plus these pups are tight with their owners and you can take them anywhere thanks to their tiny size.