Laughter serves many purposes. In fact, the Mayo Clinic says it’s a great stress reliever, produces relaxation and can act as an anti-depressant. Endorphins, the body’s natural pain reliever, are activated during laughing too.

Researchers at Washington State University teamed up with rats see the effect of tickling and laughter on stress in medical procedures like getting an injection. Let’s face it, getting a shot is pretty stressful, and no matter how many times you have to get them, it is still an anxious time. Rats were tickled before getting a shot, and yes, they even laughed, well they chirped. This made the entire experience less stressful because it reduced the anxiety, and perhaps offers some lessons for pet owners in reducing fear.

When you take your pet to the veterinarian’s office, is it a pleasant trip, or is it a wrestling event? Maybe some playtime before hand can help some of that anxiety disappear.
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