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Research indicates that owning a dog as a pet can positively impact the microbiota

Research indicates that owning a dog as a pet can positively impact the composition and diversity of our microbiota potentially leading to health benefits.


A recent study investigated the impact of dog ownership on the gut microbiota of elderly owners. The key findings were:


  • Dog ownership had a significant impact on the microbial structure and function of elderly individuals

  • Elderly individuals who owned a dog exhibited an increased abundance of Actinobacteria

  • Dog owners showed significant increases in Bifidobacteriaceae and Ruminococcaceae, both of which are considered beneficial for health


Not all bacteria are harmful! This study highlights the mutually beneficial relationship between pets and their owners!


Reference

Jiang C, Cui Z, Fan P, Du G. Effects of dog ownership on the gut microbiota of elderly owners. PLoS One. 2022 Dec 7;17(12):e0278105. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0278105. PMID: 36477426; PMCID: PMC9728917.


About the author  

Dr. Aline Santana is a Brazilian veterinarian with over 12 years of experience in both research and private dermatology practice. In 2021, she completed her PhD in veterinary dermatology at the University of São Paulo (Brazil), with a sandwich period at the University of Minnesota, where she conducted research on the skin microbiome of cats. Since 2012, she has been an active member of the Brazilian Society of Veterinary Dermatology (SBDV). From 2015 to 2021, Dr. Santana served as the director of social media marketing, contributing to the organization's outreach and communication efforts.





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