Photo @ladzinski / Adorableness aside, companionship from pets is proven to lower blood pressure and increase oxytocin, a hormone that reduces stress. Research has further shown that pet owners experience less illness and faster recovery from serious health conditions. Active pets, like dogs, encourage us to exercise more, even on those chilly mornings when we don’t want to, by spending time outside going for walks. This photo here is of my dog, Vesper, taken with an #infrared camera in the wintery mountains of colorado. The “rings” in the photo are the result of lens flare from shooting into the sun.