Most people don't need an excuse to buy a dog, but if you were on the fence we have some good news. New research shows that owning a dog can prevent your child from developing some common medical conditions, and they can improve your health too.
Scientists have already shown that dogs can help patients with Alzheimer's, depression and anxiety manage their symptoms, and they can even help lower your blood pressure.
But now they're adding one more almost magical health effect of owning a dog: they can prevent your child from developing allergies and asthma.
The study by the University of Alberta tracked over 700 infants, starting months before they were born. Researchers identified which mothers owned dogs, then studied their babies' guts for bacteria that's believed to prevent allergies and asthma.
Babies who lived with dogs were twice as likely to have this good bacteria, and went on to develop less allergies.
In fact, the effect of owning a dog is so strong, it actually begins before the child is born. Even when parents gave their dog away before their child was born, the kids still got the good bacteria from their mothers.
So what can you do if you're allergic to dogs? Doctors hope to take the health effects of owning a dog and turn it into a pill. But don't expect it any time soon, because a miracle cure like that will be pretty hard to make.
Share this good news if you love dogs!