“It is a good thing to be rich, it is a good thing to be strong, but it is a better thing to be beloved of many friends.”
~ Euripides (480-406 BC) Greek Playwright
All the money and strength in the world can’t get you the kind of friends that give you all you need to live a happy life. Friends are to be treasured, cherished and preserved all your life so that you don’t lose them. Losing good friends is more painful than losing money or power because they are alive, unique and hard to acquire. Pets can be counted as friends. After all, they are considered to be man’s best friend. People who own pets, especially dogs, have been shown to be less stressed and require fewer visits to their physicians than non-owners. Survival rates for heart-attack victims who had a pet have been shown to be 12% longer than for those who did not have one. Pet owners have also been shown to have lower blood pressure. The reasons are most likely related to an array of psychological factors, such as the fact that owning a pet decreases loneliness and depression, encourages laughter and nurturing, and stimulates exercise. If you don’t have a pet that you can care for, then go adopt one and start living a happier lifestyle with your new friend.
Special thanks to Tim Coffey for use of his illustration.