• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This book sets out to examine how animals affect their companion humans' quality of life. The contributors address human animal interaction (HAI) according to the elements that define quality of life: physical; mental/emotional and social health; functional health; and general well-being. The book will be required reading for all health and social science professionals caring for clients who already have companion animals or for clients who might benefit from such interaction.

Chapter 6: A Theoretical Basis for Health Benefits of Pet Ownership: Attachment Versus Psychological Support

A Theoretical Basis for Health Benefits of Pet Ownership: Attachment Versus Psychological Support
A theoretical basis for health benefits of pet ownership: Attachment versus psychological support
Glyn M.CollisJuneMcNicholas
Abstract

A number of studies suggest an association between pet ownership and advantages for health, but the underlying processes are not clear. One hypothesis is that the relationship between person and pet could directly influence the owner's health. This motivates exploration of issues concerning the nature and function(s) of these relationships. These relationships are most likely based on psychological mechanisms other than attachment or other motivationally driven mechanisms that underlie human-human relationships but not specifically attachment relationships. Despite its attraction as an intriguing issue that should yield to scientific analysis, the nature of person-pet relationships is still not well understood. ...

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