Pixabay/Harvard University studies show having a dog can be good for your heart. The Atlantic County Shelter is waving adoption fees during February, American Heart Month.

PLEASANTVILLE – While you may know that February is American Heart Month, you may not be aware that owning a dog may help improve your heart health.

According to reports from the Harvard Medical School, several studies have shown that dog owners have lower blood pressure than non-owners, likely due to the calming effects dogs have on their owners and the additional exercise owners tend to get from dog walks and playtime activities. There is also evidence of lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels among dog owners.

“For those who are considering dog ownership, this is yet another benefit of having a forever friend,” Atlantic County Animal Shelter Manager Kathy Kelsey said.

To celebrate American Heart Month, the shelter is waiving the $110 adoption fee for dogs who are ready for immediate adoption beginning Sunday, Feb. 9 through Sunday, Feb. 16.

All pets adopted from the shelter include mandatory sterilization, age-appropriate vaccinations, diagnostic testing, a microchip and a free veterinary consultation. Adopted dogs also receive two free obedience classes.

The shelter is open to the public 1-4 p.m. seven days a week, with the exception of Tuesday when it closes at 3 p.m. It is located at 240 Old Turnpike Road in Pleasantville.

For more information about the Atlantic County Animal Shelter please visit www.aclink.org/animalshelter or call 609-485-2345.

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.