Puppy Love! The holidays can be stressful, finding the right gift, guests arriving, planning the perfect party, missing a loved one … Do you just need a little extra loving today? Studies show that hugging is extremely effective at healing sickness, disease, loneliness, depression, anxiety and stress.
A famous quote by psychotherapist Virginia Satir states, “We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”
Twelve hugs a day seems like a bit much, but if your friend (furry or otherwise) doesn’t mind all the love then we encourage it! A hug can’t hurt; it can only help, so why not? Whether you’re upset, sick, or are just in need of some TLC, it is always a good idea to hug it out.
1. The nurturing touch of a hug builds trust and a sense of safety. This helps with open and honest communication. Hugging builds stronger, lifelong relationships (with humans or canines)!
2. Hugs can heal feelings of loneliness, isolation, and anger, by instantly boosting oxytocin levels. Hugging lifts one’s serotonin levels, elevating mood and creating happiness if you hold one for an extended period of time. Hugging not only helps physically, but also mentally which benefits overall health.
3. Hugging boosts self-esteem. It is embedded in our DNA that hugs remind us of our family’s touch. That touch is associated with a sense of belonging, and feeling loved and special (this directly associates with self-love). So, hug your friends, significant other, or pet. Show that you love them, and lift their spirits. It could lift yours too!
4. Hugging relaxes your muscles. Hugs release tension in the body. Hugs can take away pain; they soothe aches by increasing circulation into the soft tissues. Cuddle on the couch with your pooch, and watch the daily stress dispel.
5. The medicinal value in hugging is worth barking about! Who knew?! It stimulates the thymus gland which balances the body’s production of white blood cells keeping us healthy, stimulates the brain’s release of dopamine which reduces depression and activates pleasure, and releases endorphins and serotonin which also promotes pleasure and reduces pain.
If you want more tips on how to give a good hug, watch this video!
Now that you’ve been given a class on hugs, why wouldn’t you start hugging it out?! Hugging is all pro’s and no con’s, so we suggest you go for it. Your roommate might think it’s weird that she’s receiving 12 hugs a day, but I’m sure your dog wouldn’t mind. The good thing about canines is that they’re always ready to cuddle. If you don’t have a hound to hug, you should adopt one for the holiday.
Adopt a hound worth hugging HERE!