For years, single people have constantly been told that if they wanted to live longer they needed to rush out and get a partner. However, a study recently published on and Scientific Reports by seven Swedish scientists shows owning a dog may also lead to a longer lifespan for single people.

The study reviewed statistical data collected from around Sweden regarding animal ownership and cardiovascular disease. The study was conducted by reviewing the statistical data of 3.5 million Swedish people between the ages of 40 to 80. The study reflected 12 years of research and only studied the relationship between dog ownership and mortality.

The findings were striking.

Single dog owners live longer than singles without dogs

Single people who owned Dogs were found to have a 33 percent less chance of death than similar single subjects who didn’t own a dog. Single dog owners were also 36 percent less likely to have a cardiovascular disease.

The researchers believe that since single people have to take care of their dogs by themselves, they get more activity than families or couples who collectively take care of dogs. They also noted there was a difference between the owners of specific breeds of dogs.

Scientists also found that owners of terrier and hunting breeds were especially healthy because the dogs are more active and require more physical activity from their owners.

Activity levels are believed to be a reason for the increased lifespan of Singles who own dogs.

These are the breeds that make a difference

So what types of dogs qualify as terrier and hunting breeds? Five of the most popular terrier breeds are:

  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
  • Bull Terrier
  • Airedale Terrier

Hunting breeds are also high spirited and energetic dogs, popular choices are:

  • Labrador Retriever
  • American Foxhound
  • Beagle
  • Pointer
  • Bloodhound

This is the secret tie-in between dogs and a long life

The secret to having a dog and prolonging your life isn’t the breed.

Researchers found that any breed of dog is beneficial to some extent in a person’s life.

What is important is you take care of your own dog. You won’t experience any of the health benefits if you buy a dog and leave the care and walking up to somebody else. You need to be the one who walks and plays with your dog.

Research shows that while single people get big benefits from owning a dog, married people and multi-person households do not.

Researchers surmise the reason is that multiple people are taking care of the dog and spreading the exercise amongst each other. But, the level of exercise isn’t enough to benefit any one person significantly.

Plus, single people are more likely to be socially isolated from other people. Owning a dog increases social interaction and communication with other people.

What this means to you

You shouldn’t rush right out and buy a dog unless you are committed to being a responsible and loving dog owner. If you can spend the time caring for and loving a dog, and you are looking for a unique way to stay healthy and connect with other people, then maybe buying a dog is the next step in your healthcare plan.