Dog ownership promotes healthy hearts

Baldwin County

BALDWIN COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — David Trice of Point Clear loves his dogs, Bailey and Sadie. He enjoys playing with them at his home on Mobile Bay.

“They’re family, and they’ve been with us a number of years.” said Trice who is also a physician with Cardiology Associates in Fairhope.

Dr. Trice knows being active with his fur babies and the social interaction he has with them are good for his heart.

“People tend to have lower blood pressure when they have good relationships with dogs and they tend to live longer,” said Dr. Trice.

When the owner of Shades of Orange Beach began taking his dogs to work years ago, his wife was skeptical, but customers love it.

“Low and behold we got our dogs on T-shirts now … and it’s just kind of snowballed to..they are our marketing campaigns, they’re on billboards, their on our T-shirts, our bags, our stickers and uh..even my wife’s embraced it now,” said Joe Jernigan.

The American Heart Association praises businesses like Shades where dogs aren’t just welcome, the owner encourages employees and customers to bring their pooches into the store.

“Why not? It’s fun. It’s .. the employee’s happy, the pet’s happy. The customers are happy. The productivity goes up. Everybody’s in a good mood. Life’s better when you got your dog with ya.” said Jernigan.

The American Heart Association has a program called Best Friend Fridays.
To learn more about how you can help put pets in the workplace while helping raise money for heart-healthy research, go to

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