Animals have their magic in them. Amid coronavirus threat, many people turn to social media and often ask fellow internet users to “send dog and cat pictures please.” Of course, fellow animal lovers would abide and a collection of dig and cat photos will fill the internet, and for some reason, it does have a calming effect.

Researchers and experts on animal behavior largely recognize the special relationship humans have with their animal companions, especially cats and dogs.

Mental health campaigner and certified animal lover Marion Jannes says animal companions do teach us humans important lessons.

“Dogs love us unconditionally,” she says. “They’re the ultimate in equal opportunities – entirely indifferent to race, gender, star sign, CV, clothes size, or ability to throw moves on the dance floor. The simplicity and depth of this love is a continuous joy, along wtih the health benefits of daily walks and the social delight of chats with other dog walkers. They teach kids to be responsible, altruistic and compassionate and valuably, but sadly, how to cope when someone you love dies.”

Another pet owner shares that he used to be overworked that it took a toll on his healthy, mentally and physically. Aside from therapy, he says taking his rescue dog out for a walk does the magic.

The question is: why? One key aspect is social recognition, or our animal companion’s ability to identify another important or significant individual in his or her life.

Academic and psychologist Jun McNichols said pets can be a lifeline, especially for the socially isolated people.