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Best Emotional Support Animals for Mental Health

Best Emotional Support Animals for Mental Health

Best Emotional Support Animals for Mental Health  

Did you know that llamas and alpacas are some of the best pets for mental health? They are not the obvious pick for a pet, but when they are raised around people, they are well-known to be empathic and gentle creatures. Though you may not have enough outdoor space to care for a llama or alpaca properly, that’s alright since there is a list of the best emotional support animals for mental health that you can adopt into your family.  

Pets and Mental Health  

Pet therapy is often recommended to people who already have pets or are animal lovers. People who struggle with mental health illnesses or substance abuse can use this method to reduce stress, increase energy, reduce depressive episodes, and calm anxiety. Low-maintenance emotional support animals are a great way to spend your time caring and feeling cared for, especially if they are small and fluffy, like a hamster or a bunny.  

Furry friends lower feelings of loneliness and provide comfort to individuals who struggle with intrusive or repetitive thoughts. Support animals are often wonderful for individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or depression. They increase mental stimulation and provide a happy or positive mental distraction.  

Animals That Help With Anxiety and Depression 

Dogs and cats are the most common animals used for anxiety and depression. A dog is the best pet for a child with anxiety since they can be trained as service animals who will know how to address a situation where a child may have a severe attack, tremors, or seizures. Of course, there are other animals that are smaller or just as helpful in reducing negative symptoms.  

Some of the best pets for depression and anxiety or other mental health issues include:  

  • Duck  
  • Goat 
  • Turtle 
  • Sheep  
  • Ferret  
  • Rabbit 
  • Chicken 
  • Hedgehog 
  • Guinea pig 
  • Bearded dragon 
  • Parrot or small birds 
  • Miniature horse or donkey  

These are some of the best emotional support animals for mental health. The best small pets for anxiety include rabbits, guinea pigs, and birds. These animals help lower blood pressure, regulate heartbeat, better self-esteem, and keep the mind preoccupied. The cons to animals are maintaining their hygiene, keeping the environment sanitized, and traveling with the animal, as not all places (such as stores and airlines) will recognize these as emotional support animals.  

Pet Therapy and Mental Health Treatment at Banyan  

At the center of mental health care in Boca, our experienced medical team is ready to design a treatment plan that best fits your recovery goals. If you are struggling with a mental disorder and are seeking medical care, then we have you covered! We treat co-occurring mental health disorders as well as mood and anxiety disorders. From pets to music and art therapy, we offer unique programs to help you recover or reduce adverse symptoms so you can live the life you want.  

Speak to a specialist at Banyan Mental Health by calling 888-280-4763 and ask about our faith-based counseling or aftercare program to get started on the path to recovery today!  

Related Readings:  

Can Dogs Sense Depression?  

Bipolar Affect on the Brain 

Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.
Best Emotional Support Animals for Mental Health
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