Pets with benefits

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Older people who have a canine companion are 50 per cent less likely to have a disability than non-dog-owning people of a similar age, according to a study of more than 11,000 people aged 65 to 84 years. People who own a dog and exercise regularly are even less likely to develop a disability. Adjusting for a range of demographic factors didn’t change the outcome: dog ownership was linked to a lower level of disability as people aged. Cat ownership, on the other hand, was not associated with any difference in disability risk.


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