Studies have shown that owning a pet can alleviate anxiety, stress and depression in all ages. Children and adults who form strong emotional bonds with dogs notice a positive impact on their mental health. Pet ownership can also improve self-esteem and help to develop empathy in children. For me, having pets ( 3 cats and a dog), has really helped with loneliness due to my social anxiety. Constant companionship, love and affection are just a few of the benefits I have found from owning pets.