The Courier-Mail

DOGS FACE THE TEST OF TIME

- SUE DUNLEVY

SCIENTISTS are out to prove dogs can help their owners live longer.

A University of Sydney team will put the physical, psychologi­cal and social benefits of owning a dog to a lab test to find out if dog owners live longer and are less likely to develop heart disease or depression.

The research is being led by Associate Professor Manos Stamatakis, who was indifferen­t to dogs until one pooped in his kitchen and hid in shame.

“I realised he was embarrasse­d and ashamed, and ... (that) dogs understand a lot more than I thought,” he said. “I began to see how dogs could expand human emotional horizons.”

Teneriffe’s Sarah Morgan, 25, who lives alone, said caring for her puppy Louie, an eight-month-old jack russell-pug cross, gave her a “sense of purpose”.

“He brings fun and life to home,” she said. “There’s also a sense of purpose having that positive responsibi­lity.”

 ??  ?? PUG POSITIVITY: Sarah Morgan of Teneriffe plays with Louie at New Farm Park. Picture: Steve Pohlner
PUG POSITIVITY: Sarah Morgan of Teneriffe plays with Louie at New Farm Park. Picture: Steve Pohlner

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