Letter to the editor from Diane Kappen: Less stress with pets


David [Hurtado],

Your column, “Less stress with pets,” was well written, thanks. There has been lots of research in social psychology and health psychology showing that caring for pets and the care you get back from pets improves health in everyone from little kids to the elderly.

Your research on pet research shows that cat owners tend to be introverts, people who tend to be shy, reserved and quiet. There might be an additional cat owner characteristic (not scientifically supported, at least as far as I know). I have four cats. My cats are independent, loving, curious. They don’t respond to “sit” or “fetch.” Demanding that they stay off of the couch or the countertop is a waste of time and energy. I admire their independence. They teach me that there are people and events that may not be in line with my way of thinking and that I can’t and shouldn’t try to control everything.

-Diane Kappen, adjunct associate professor, Psychology


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