Library: GENERAL Health Benefits of Animals

Updated: 1/24/2013 (*denotes newest articles)


Gaps In The Evidence About Companion Animals And Human Health: Some Suggestions For Progress. Chur-Hansen, Anna; Stern, Cindy; Winefield, Helen. International Journal of Evidence-Based Healthcare. 2010 Sep; 8(3): 140-146.

Tails of Animal Attraction: Incorporating the Feline Into the Family. Downey, Hilary; Ellis, Sarah. Journal of Business Research, 2008 May; 61(5): 434-441.

A Tail of Two Personalities: How Canine Companions Shape Relationships and Well-being. Cavanaugh, Lisa A; Leonard, Hillary A; Scammon, Debra L. Journal of Business Research, 2008 May; 61(5): 469-479.

Love, Safety, and Companionship: The Human-animal Bond and Latino Families. Faver, Catherine A.; Cavazos, Alonzo M, Jr. Journal of Family Social Work, 2008; 11(3): 254-271.

The Human-Animal Bond: Health Implications Across the Lifespan. Horowitz, Sala. Alternative & Complementary Therapies, 2008 Oct; 14(5): 251-256.

Barriers and Motivators for Owners Walking Their Dog: Results from Qualitative Research. Cutt, Hayley E; Giles-Corti, Billie; Wood, Lisa J; Knuiman, Matthew W; Burke, Valerie. Health Promotion Journal of Australia. 2008 Aug; 19(2): 118-124.

The Animal/Human Bond: A Prescription for Good Health. Carson, Lynn. American Journal of Health Education, 2006 Nov-Dec; 37(6): 361-365.

Healthy Reasons to Have a Pet (compiled listing of several research study findings)

Domestic and Farm-Animal Exposures and Risk of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma in a Population-Based Study in the San Francisco Bay Area.  Gregory J. Tranah, Paige M. Bracci, and Elizabeth A. Holly.  Cancel Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 17(9), 2008, September.

Veterinary Students’ Attitudes About the Legal Status of Dogs and Cats Francois Martin1, Sylvia Glover JD21 Center for the Study of Animal Well-being, Washington State University, United States, 2WSU Office of the Attorney General [Presentation from the 11th International Conference on Human-Animal Interactions, People & Animals: Partnership in Harmony, Tokyo, Japan, October 5-8, 2008]

A Four-Legged Cure by Heather Grimshaw - ThriVe nyc, July 2008

Study Results: Stress in Pet Owners and Non-Pet Owners by Jill Kraus

Feature Article: Developing a Physiology of Inclusion: Recognizing the Health Benefits of Animal Companions by James Lynch.

The Healthy Pleasure of Their Company by Karen Allen (part of Companion Animals in the Community.)

Recent Discoveries About Our Relationships with the Natural World by Leo Bustad.

Coping with Life Changes & Transitions: The Role of the Pet by Karen Allen.

Loneliness: A Health Hazard of Modern Times by Susan L. Duncan.

Studies of Loneliness: Recent Research into the Effects of Companion Animals by Andrea Leigh Ptak.

Recent Studies on How the Presence of Pets Affects People During Life Transitions by Ann Howie.

The Role of Pets in the Social Networks of Children, Adolescents, and Elderly People by June McNicholas and Glyn M. Collis

Benefits of Animal-Assisted Therapy at a Veterinary School by Deborah Linder, Tufts Veterinary School.

Doggie ‘doctors’ diagnose their owners’ ills: Canines’ keen sense of smell, intuition helps them detect people's disease by Kim Campbell Thornton, MSNBC contributor, August 27, 2008


Does Emotional Support From Cats Depend Upon Anthropomorphism?John Bradshaw, Peter Hiscox, Elizabeth Paul

University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

* Friends with Benefits: On the Positive Consequences of Pet Ownership. McConnell, Allen R.; Brown, Christina M.; Shoda, Tonya M.; Stayton, Laura E.; Martin, Colleen E. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 2011 Dec; 101(6): 1239-1252.

* Human-Animal Bonds Between Zoo Professionals and the Animals in Their Care. Hosey, Geoff; Melfi, Vicky. Zoo Biology. 2012 Jan-Feb; 31(1): 13-26.

* Mental Health Implications of Human Attachment to Companion Animals. Peacock, Jasmin; Chur-Hansen, Anna; Winefield, Helen. Journal of Clinical Psychology. 2012 Mar; 68(3): 292-303.

* Investigation on People Living with Seal Robot at Home: Analysis of Owners’ Gender Differences and Pet Ownership experience. Shibata, Takanori; Kawaguchi, Yukitaka; Wada, Kazuyoshi. International Journal of Social Robotics. 2012 Jan; 4(1): 53-63.

* On the Internet, Everybody Knows You’re a Dog: The Human-Pet Relationship in online social networks. Golbeck, Jennifer.
p.4495-4500, CHI 2009, April 4-9, 2009, Boston, MA, USA.

* Social Context Influences the Vocalizations of a Home-Raised African Grey Parrot (Psittacus erithacus erithacus). Colbert-White, Eric N.; Covington, Michael A.; Fragaszy, Dorothy M. Journal of Comparative Psychology. 2011 May; 125(2): 175-184.

* What Does Owning a Pet Mean to Homeless People? Slatter, L.; Lloyd, C.; Bassett, H. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal. 2011; 58: Supplement, 1: 86-87.

* Unleashing Their Potential: A Critical Realist Scoping Review of the Influence of Dogs on Physical Activity for Dog-Owners and Non-Owners. Toohey, Ann M.; Rock, Melanie J. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2011 May 21; 8: 46 (9 pages).

* Dogs as a Diagnostic Tool for Ill Health in Humans. Wells, Deborah L. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine. 2012 Mar-Apr; 18(2): 12-17.

* Cross-Cultural Studies on Subjective Evaluation of a Seal Robot. Shibata, Takanori; Wada, Kazuyoshi; Ikeda, Yousuke; Sabanovic, Selma. Advanced Robotics. 2009; 23: 443-458.

* Hardware Companions? – What Online AIBO Discussion Forums Reveal About the Human-Robotic Relationship. Friedman, Batya; Kahn, Peter H., Jr.; Hagman, Jennifer.  Pages 273-280, IN: CHI 2003: new horizons: conference proceedings, Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems/ editors, Victoria Bellotti … [et al.]. New York: Association for Computing Machinery, c2003. xx, 615 p. : illus.; 28 cm.

The Development and Factor Structure of a Questionnaire Measure of the Strength of Attachment to Pet Dogs. Archer, John; Ireland, Jane L. Anthrozoös. 2011 Sep; 24(3): 249-261.  

Fishy Tales:   Experiences of the Occupation of Keeping Fish as Pets. Langfield, Janaya; James, Carole. British Journal of Occupational Therapy. Aug 2009; 72(8): 349-356.

Human-Sled Dog Relations:  What Can We Learn from the Stories and Experiences of Mushers? Kuhl, Gail. Society & Animals. 2011; 19(1): 22-37.

Household Contact with Pets and Birds and Risk of Lymphoma. Bellizzi, Saverio; Cocco, Pierluigi; Zucca, Mariagrazia;, D'Andrea, Ileana; Sesler, Simonetta; Monne, Maria; Onida, Angela; Piras, Ggiovanna; Uras, Antonella; Angelucci, Emanuele; Gabbas, Attilio; Rais, Marco; Nitsch, Dorothea; Ennas, Maria G. Cancer Causes & Control. 2011 Feb; 22(2): 159-165.

The Human-Companion Animal Bond: How Humans Benefit. Friedmann, Erika; Son, Heesook. Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice. 2009 Mar; 39(2): 293-326

The Possible Role Of Companion-Animal Anthropomorphism And Social Support In The Physical And Psychological Health Of Dog Guardians. Duvall Antonacopoulos, Nikolina M.; Pychyl, Timothy A. Society and Animals. 2010; 18(4): 379-395.

Owners And Pets Exercising Together (OPET): Study Design And Biopsychosocial Descriptors Of Dogs And Their Owners. Goodie, Jeffrey; Wilson, Cindy C.; Stephens, Mark; Byers, Christopher G.; Olsen, Cara; Netting, F. Ellen; Yonemura, Mary; McCune, Sandra. Annals of Behavioral Medicine. 2010 Apr; 39, Supplement 1: 33-33.

Living With Companion Animals, Physical Activity And Mortality In A U.S. National Cohort. Gillum, Richard F.; Obisesan, Thomas O. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2010 Jun; 7(6): 2452-2459.

Companion Animals And Human Health: Benefits, Challenges, And The Road Ahead. O’Haire, Marguerite. Journal of Veterinary Behavior. 2010; 5: 226-234.

Cancer Patients And Their Companion Animals: Results From A 309-Patient Survey On Pet-Related Concerns And Anxieties During Chemotherapy. Larson, Brenda R.; Looker, Sherry; Herrera, Dianne M.; Creagan, Edward T.; Hayman, Suzanne R.; Kaur, Judith S.; Jatoi, Aminah. Journal of Cancer Education. 2010; 25(3): 396-400.

The Human-Companion Animal Bond: How Humans Benefit. Friedmann, Erika; Son, Heesook. Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice. 2009 Mar; 39(2): 293-326.

Survival Following An Acute Coronary Syndrome: A Pet Theory Put To The Test. Parker, G. B.; Gayed, A.; Owen, C. A.; Hyett, M. P.; Hilton, T. M.; Heruc, G. A. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. 2010 Jan; 121(1): 65-70.

Psychophysiological Effects Of Human-Animal Interaction: Theoretical Issues And Long-Term Interaction Effects. Virués-Ortega, Javier; Buela-Casal, Gualberto. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 2006 Jan; 194(1): 52-57.

Physical Activity And Pet Ownership In Year 3 Of The Health ABC Study. Thorpe, Roland J., Jr.; Kreisle, Regina A.; Glickman, Lawrence T.; Simonsick, Eleanor M.; Newman, Anne B.; Kritchevsky, Stephen. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity. 2006 Apr; 14(2): 154-168.

Pet Ownership As A Meaningful Community Occupation For People With Serious Mental Illness. Zimolag, Ulrike; Krupa, Terry. American Journal of Occupational Therapy. 2009 Mar-Apr; 63(2): 126-137.

Overweight In Dogs, But Not In Cats, Is Related To Overweight In Their Owners. Nijland, Marieke L.; Stam, Frank; Seidell, Jacob C. Public Health Nutrition. 2010 Jan; 13(1): 102-106.

"I'm Just A'-Walking The Dog": Correlates Of Regular Dog Walking. Christian, Hayley; Giles-Corti, Billie; Knuiman, Matthew. Family & Community Health. 2010 Jan-Mar; 33(1): 44-52

Dog Walking And Physical Activity In The United States. Ham, Sandra A.; Epping, Jacqueline. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2006 Apr; 3(2): 1-7.

Attachment Between Humans And Dogs. Nagasawa, Miho; Mogi, Kazutaka; Kikusui, Takefumi. Japanese psychological research. 2009 Sep; 51(3): 209-221.

Aspects Of Health, Physical/Leisure Activities, Work And Socio-Demographics Associated With Pet Ownership In Sweden. Müllersdorf, Maria; Granström, Fredrik; Sahlqvist, Lotta; Tillgren, Per. Scandinavian Journal of Public Health. 2010 Feb; 38(1): 53-63.

Effects Of Interactions Between Humans And Domesticated Animals. Bokkers, Eddie A.M. p.31-41, IN: Farming for health : green-care farming across Europe and the United States of America / edited by Jan Hassink and Majken van Dijk. (Wageningen UR frontis series ; v. 13). Dordrecht : Springer, c2006. x, 357 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm.

Befriending Man's Best Friends: Does Altruism Toward Animals Promote Psychological And Physical Health? Dizon, Marivic; Butler, Lisa D.; Koopman, Cheryl. p.277-291. IN: Post, Stephen G. Altruism and health: perspectives from empirical research. Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, c2007. xxii, 458 p. ; illus. ; 25 cm.

The Human-Companion Animal Bond: How Humans Benefit. Friedmann, E.; Son, H. Veterinary Clinics of North America. Small Animal Practice. 2009 Mar; 39(2): 293-326.

Health Promotion for Dogs and Humans: the 10,000 Steps Rockhampton Dog Walking Intervention. Schofield, G.; Steele, R.; Mummery, K.; Brown, W.; Trost, [S.]; Eakin, L. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. 2003 Dec; 6(4) Supplement: 64-64.

Empathic Differences in Adults as a Function of Childhood and Adult Pet Ownership and Pet Type. Daly, B.;Morton, L.L. Anthrozoös, 2009 Dec; 22(4): 371-382.

The Effects of Animals on Human Health and Well-Being. Wells, D.L. Journal of Social Issues. 2009 Sep; 65(3); 523-543.

A Counterbalanced Version of Ainsworth's Strange Situation Procedure Reveals Secure-Base Effects in Dog-Human Relationships. Palmer, Robyn; Custance, Deborah. Applied Animal Behaviour Science. 2008 Feb; 109(2-4): 306-319.

Furry Families: Making a Human-Dog Family Through Home. Power, Emma. Social & Cultural Geography, 2008 Aug; 9(5): 535-555. Correspondence to Power, Department of Human Geography, Macquarie University, NSW 2109, Australia;

The Illusion of Love: Does a Virtual Pet Provide the Same Companionship as a Real One? Chesney, Thomas; Lawson, Shaun. Interaction Studies, 2007; 8(2): 337-342. Correspondence to Chesney, Division of Information Systems, Nottingham University Business School, Jubilee Campus, Wollaton Road, Nottingham, UK NG18 1BB;

The Use of Canines in the Detection of Human Cancers. Gordon, Robert T; Schatz, Carole Beck; Myers, Lawrence J.; Kosty, Michael; Gonczy, Constance; Kroener, Joan; Tran, Michael; Kurtzhals, Pamela; Heath, Susan; Koziol, James A.; Arthur, Nan; Gabriel, Madeleine; Hemping, Judy; Hemping, Gordon; Nesbitt, Sally; Tucker-Clark, Lydia; Zaayer, Jennifer. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 2008 Jan-Feb; 14(1): 61-67.

Dog Ownership, Health and Physical Activity: A Critical Review of the Literature. Cutt, H., Giles-Corti, B., Knuiman, M., Burke, V. Health & Place, 13(1) 2007 Mar:261-72

More Than a Furry Companion: The Ripple Effect of Companion Animals on Neighborhood Interactions and Sense of Community. Wood, L. J., Giles-Corti, G., Bulsara, M. K., Bosch, D. A. Society & Animals, 15(1) 2007:43-56.

The Animal-Human Bond and Ethnic Diversity. Risley-Curtiss, C., Holley, L. C., Wolf, S. Social Work, 51(3) 2006:257-68.

Behavioral and Physiological Responses of Guide Dogs to a Situation of Emotional Distress. Fallani, G., Prato Previde, E, Velsecchi, P. Physiology & Behavior, 90(4) 2007 Mar:648-55. 

Human Interaction and Cortisol: Can Human Contact Reduce Stress for Shelter Dogs? Coppola, C. L., Grandin, T., Enns, R. M. Physiology & Behavior, 87(3) 2007 Mar:537-41.

Investigating the Therapeutic benefits of Companion Animals: Problems and Challenges. Franklin, A., Emmison, M., Haraway, D., Travers, M. Qualitative Sociology Review, 3(1) 2007 Apr:42-58. 

Are Pets a Healthy Pleasure? The Influence of Pets on Blood Pressure. Allen, K. Current Directions in Psychological Science. Dec 2003; 12(6):236-9

Psychophysiological Effects of Human-Animal Interaction: Theoretical Issues and Long-Term Interaction Effects. Virues-Ortega, J., Buela-Casal, G. J Nerv Ment Dis. 2006 Jan; 194(1):52-7.

Pets and Human Health in Germany and Australia: National Longitudinal Results. Headey, B., Grabka, M. M. Social Indicators Research, 80(2) 2007 Jan:297-311.

Pseudoseizure Dogs. Krauss, G. L., Choi, J. S., Lesser, R. P. Neurology, 68(4) 2007 Jan 23:308-9.

The PPET Study: People and Pets Exercising Together. Kushner, R. F., Blatner, D. J., Jewell, D. E., Rudloff, K. Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.), 14(10) 2006 Oct: 1762-70.

“She was Family:” Women of Color and Animal-Human Connections. Risley-Curtiss, C., Holley, L. C., Cruickshank, T., Porcelli, J., Rhoads, C., Bacchus, D. N A., Nyakoe, S., Murphy, S. B. Affilia: Journal of Women & Social Work, 21(4) 2006 Winter: 433-47.

Teachers’ Pets and Why They Have Them: An Investigation of the Human-Animal Bond. Staats, S., Sears, K., Pierfelice, L. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 36(8) 2006 Aug:1881-91.

Tails of Laughter: A Pilot Study Examining the Relationship Between Companion Animal Guardianship (Pet Ownership) and Laughter. Valeri, R. M. Society & Animals, 14(3) 2006:275-93.


Health Benefits of Animals


Animal-Assisted Therapy (Chapter 14). O’Connor-Von, Susan. p.207-223, IN: Snyder, Mariah; Lindquist, Ruth (editors). Complementary & Alternative Therapies in Nursing. 6th ed. New York: Springer, c2010. Xxii, 511 p. ISBN 9780826124289.

The Magic of Touch: Healing Effects of Animal Touch and Animal Presence. Reinhardt, Annie; Reinhardt, Viktor. Washington, DC: Animal Welfare Institute, c2010. 83 p.   ISBN 978-0-38414-89-6

The Psychology of the Human-Animal Bond: A Resource for Clinicians and Researchers. Blazina, Christopher; Boyra, Güler; Shen-Miller, David (editors). New York: Springer, 2011. xxii, 421 p.: illus.; 24 cm. $US 169.00: ISBN 9781441997609 (hard cover: alk. paper), ISBN 9781441997616 (eBook)

Walk a Hound, Lose a Pound : How You and Your Dog Can Lose Weight, Stay Fit, and Have Fun Together. Zeltzman, Phil; Johnson, Rebecca A. (New directions in the human-animal bond). West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, c2011. xi, 160 p.: illus.; 23 cm.

The Health Benefits of Dog Walking for People and Pets: Evidence and Case Studies. Johnson, Rebecca; Beck, Alan; McCune, Sandra (editors). (New directions in the human-animal bond). West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2011. xviii, 197 p.: illus.; 24 cm.

Paws & Effect: The Healing Power Of Dogs. Sakson, Sharon. New York : Alyson, 2007.

Pet First Aid: Cats & Dogs by Robbie Mammato and The American Red Cross. 1997. 

Between Pets and People: The Importance of Animal Companionship by Alan M. Beck, et al. 1996.

Book Review: People I Sleep With by Jill Fineberg

Soul Friends, Finding Healing with Animals by Kate Nicoll

Book Review: The World's Children and Their Companion Animals, Developmental and Education Significance of the Child/Pet Bond. Edited by Mary Renck Jalongo

Heel to Heal: The Collection of Animal Paintings, Drawings and Photographs of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush. The collection of animal paintings, drawings and photographs features an eclectic mix of vintage and contemporary art embodying the spirit of the museum-quality Heel to Heal exhibition at Windsor, March 14 – June 1 2004. Forward by Alannah Weston, the gallery's founder as well as Sophie Craighead, Delta Society Chairperson Emeritus, provides a nice segue into the book with the conclusion The Tales (or Tails) of a Collection by Bruce Weber and Nan Bush. To order call 772-388-4071, email or make a $200 donation to Pet Partners and receive a sealed copy as a gift.

Heel to Heal Poster: Well Trusted Friend - John Drysdale. All proceeds donated to Pet Partners.  Price $25.00. To order call 772-388-4071, email, or fax 772 388 4886

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