Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: doi:10.22028/D291-30742
Title: The Relationship between Dog Ownership, Psychopathological Symptoms and Health-Benefitting Factors in Occupations at Risk for Traumatization
Author(s): Lass-Hennemann, Johanna
Schäfer, Sarah K.
Sopp, M. Roxanne
Michael, Tanja
Language: English
Title: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume: 17
Issue: 7
Publisher/Platform: MDPI
Year of Publication: 2020
Free key words: mental health
pet ownership
high-risk occupation
posttraumatic stress
sense of coherence
locus of control
DDC notations: 150 Psychology
Publikation type: Journal Article
Abstract: Individuals working in high-risk occupations (e.g., emergency staff) are exposed to high levels of occupational stress including traumatic events. Correspondingly, several studies report high rates of mental health problems among these occupations. Pet ownership has been associated with better mental health. However, to date a study on the association between pet ownership and indicators of mental health in these occupations is missing. The present cross-sectional survey (N = 580) investigated pet ownership, attachment to pets, health-benefitting factors (i.e., sense of coherence, trait-resilience, locus of control) and psychopathological symptoms (i.e., general mental health problems, posttraumatic stress, burnout) in medical staff, police officers, and firefighters. Dog owners and non-dog owners showed comparable levels of psychopathological distress and health-benefitting factors. Compared to cat owners, dog owners demonstrated stronger emotional attachment to their pet. Moreover, a stronger attachment was also linked to higher levels of psychopathological symptoms and lower levels of health-benefitting factors. However, the relationship between attachment to pets and health-benefitting factors could be explained by their overlap with psychopathological symptom levels. Overall, our findings are not in line with the notion that pet ownership generally has a health-benefitting effect. Future studies need to investigate circumstances that modulate positive effects of pet ownership.
DOI of the first publication: 10.3390/ijerph17072562
Link to this record: urn:nbn:de:bsz:291--ds-307425
ISSN: 1660-4601
Date of registration: 16-Dec-2020
Description of the related object: Supplementary Materials
Related object:
Faculty: HW - Fakultät für Empirische Humanwissenschaften und Wirtschaftswissenschaft
Department: HW - Psychologie
Professorship: HW - Prof. Dr. Tanja Michael
Collections:SciDok - Der Wissenschaftsserver der Universität des Saarlandes

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