thankful for catsWith Thanksgiving only days away, giving thanks for what we have is at the forefront of many minds. While, you’re probably already thankful for your cats (they’re cuddly and cute to boot!), here are five more healthful reasons to appreciate them this holiday.

1. Your cat helps you sleep better

Do you feel better with kitty snuggled in bed? You’re not alone! In a sleep study conducted by Mayo Clinic, 41% of participants reported sleeping better when their cat joined them (while only 20% said it caused disturbances). Sharing the bed with kitty can provide warmth as well as comfort and security.

2. Cats reduce stress

Research has found that petting a cat or dog not only lowers blood pressure but also releases feel-good chemicals like oxytocin. In other words, interacting with your cat decreases stress while boosting feelings of pleasure and positivity. No wonder you’re less anxious with your cat around!

3. They’re good for your heart

Less stress isn’t just good for emotional health, it’s good for heart health too. So it’s no surprise that having a cat significantly decreases your chance of heart problems. In fact, one study found that cat owners were 30% less likely to die of a heart attack than non-cat owners.

4. They provide companionship

Cats are a source of love and companionship. This may seem obvious, but don’t underestimate its benefits! Research has found that loneliness is hugely detrimental to overall wellbeing, even increasing your risk of conditions like dementia. Your cat’s not just keeping you company, they’re keeping you healthy!

5. Your cat makes you smarter

Okay, so maybe cats don’t make you smarter. But cat owners do tend to have a higher intelligence than dog owners. This is possibly because cats are less maintenance, and thus allow owners more time for work or intellectual pursuits. Either way, give yourself a pat on the back (or should we say noggin?).

Whatever your reason for giving thanks for your cat this Thanksgiving, don’t forget to book them a loving, attentive and caring pet sitter to keep them well looked after while you’re visiting your friends and family.

Haven’t booked yet? There’s still time left! Contact us today!

Candace Elise Hoes is a pet sitter and blogger at Katie’s Kitty. She is a graduate of the MFA Writing Program at California College of the Arts.