How interacting with a pet helps you overcome mild depression

Dog Doctor Green Pets America

How does interacting with a pet help you overcome worry or mild depression?

When we are worried or stressed we are deeply focusing on our self. And the more we worry and focus inward on our self the worse things get. We create a downward spiral. We keep thinking about what our problem is and what we do not want. Our brains are programmed to give us what we think about. And therefore our brain gives us more of the very problem we have –  because that is all we focus on and think about.

So by playing with your pet, by stopping the incessant negative thinking about yourself, by taking your mind off your problem, by having it on something positive, something loving outside your mind your brain relaxes. And when it relaxes it starts to figure out solutions to fix what ever it is that is worrying you..

Playing with, talking with, or petting your pet stops you from your inward focus. It stops you from digging the hole deeper. It allows the attention and love of your pet to magically pull you up and out of the hole you have dug.

How do I know this? From medical research studies, from talking with clients I coach, from talking with friends and from first hand experience. When I survived the operation that healed my disease I worried about it coming back. I worried if they got it all. That worrying about myself put me into a state of negative energy. It also made me mildly depressed. Medicine did not help. Anti depressant’s did not work. What worked was starting a non-profit animal charity that made me focus on others and not me. That worked almost immediately. And to this day playing with Australian Shepard, a dog I rescued personally from a death row shelter, the day before he was to be killed, and helping people and pets cured my self-centered worrying.

Pets really do save our lives. Pets and man & woman are bonded together – and together wellness happens

Green Pets America Communities, Pet depression and worry

Green Pets America – Kids School Education


We believe that the hope of a better future for our animals and indeed our whole world lies in the hearts and minds of today’s children.

Through our Green Pets America – Communities program we take our rescued dogs into our local middle school, high school and college classrooms and talk about animal care, homeless animals and how they can help make life better for animals in their community. It is much more that however. We want to have them learn how to work cooperatively, to learn empathy for animals and one another, and learn to be leaders. They love seeing and petting our rescue dogs and love to tell us about their own pet.


Our Vision

We live today in a new world. A exponentially accelerating changing world. Since the 1800’s that rate of change has accelerated every decade and has now reached exponential rapid change.The old social paradigm was “repetition reinforces repetition” – Think assembly line production, manufacturing and even education of our children.The paradigm shifted dramatically in the late 1980’s s and the world is now suffering through this dramatic change. The new paradigm is the polar opposite of the old repetition, repetition. It is no longer building a better mousetrap, but having us and the mouse learn to live together…now change begets new change…rapidly accelerating change.  In just 10 years from now people who cannot adjust and contribute to a constantly changing world and society will be marginalized and stuck in dead-end jobs.We are experiencing that already.  We must immediately change the Pedagogy of how we educate our children, and the social skills they will need to thrive in this exponentially changing world. We believe we can help our children learn new skills and social interaction skills by tying it into fun animal education as well as social skills education.

Despite the rapid change issues we must deal with in the short-term, the long-term outlook is positive. The future will be a world in which every single person learns how to become a contributor and collaborator and learn the skills; social and functional, to drive change in an exponentially changing world where solutions and opportunities must outpace problems.

Kids 4 Pets at Cherokee Charter School
Green Pets at Cherokee Charter School

Our Mission

Teach and develop children through animals.

  • Compassion for animals
  • Responsible pet ownership
  • Ethical Leadership
  • Teamwork
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At Green Pets America Charities “Green Pets School Program” we believe we must reach our future leaders while they are learning about life and  while their minds and hearts are still hungry and open for knowledge. We believe we can reach them in a fun way via interacting with and learning from animals.  Our Children are our  hope for a better tomorrow. We are a  proud “Partner in Education” participant with the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce.

But don’t take my word for it, take a look at the results from the 2002 study, “Behavioral effects of the presence of a dog in a classroom.”

  1. Children were less engaged in loud, conspicuous, or troublesome behavior.
  1. They paid more attention to their teacher, cooperated better, and communicated more intensely with one another.
  1. Improvements in social behavior were more pronounced in boys than in girls, perhaps because girls showed less boisterous, “rough-and-tumble” activity to begin with.
  1. The teacher’s authority increased, particularly with respect to certain male students, in the presence of her compliant, obedient dog.
  1. The teacher continued to bring her dogs to school the following year. She reported that the effects observed in the study were lasting and long-term.

Join with us and  donate today so we can create a safer and better world for our children and animals to thrive  in tomorrow ?


Paw it Forward

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If you have been blessed this year then please help those who have not been so fortunate.

Please “Paw it Forward” so we can continue our work saving the innocents – homeless and abandoned animals.

Our Going Green Program  Rescued – Recycled – and Reloved hundreds of Georgia’s abandoned animals in 2013.

We pay tens of thousands of dollars to do this: all self funded or with donations from caring people like you. We do not get grants or government money. You may have one or two dogs to care for; imagine having over a hundred to rescue, vet, give shots, spay & neuter… and repair broken bones and sooth broken hearts.

Green Pets America Charities Foundation via the Cherokee County Animal League, and GPA Going Green Rescue have been supporting  animals via our food pantry kids education program, community programs and animal rescue since 2007. We have been recognized by the State of Georgia Senate and the City of Woodstock in this regard.

Our volunteers and Board work daily, without pay, to reduce suffering and create meaningful social change for animals in every way possible – from providing direct care and response in the field when animals are in crisis, to working with our leaders and lawmakers to adopt policies preventing animals from ending up in distress in the first place.

We rely on heroes like you to help us stop animal cruelty and create a more humane society for animals. We will continue to celebrate animals and fight against cruelty and abuse, but we cannot do it without you.

Be a hero for animals today and make a tax-deductible donation today.


On behalf of the animals we work for every day, thank you,

 Steve Monahan, Executive Director

Green Pets America Charities Foundation

Green Pets – Going Green Rescue

Meals 4 Pets Food Pantry

Kids 4 Pets School Education



Facts on Importance of Pets to Our Health

Our days are brighter and life is just plain better with pets in it.

Here are some interesting facts on the importance pets to our health, and our lives.

Pets Add Life Pets Help to Reduce Stress. Walking with a pet helps to sooth nerves and offers instant relaxation. Studies conducted worldwide have shown that the impact of a stressful situation is lesser on pet owners, especially males, than on those who do not own a pet
Pets Add Life Pets Help to Prevent Heart Disease and lower blood pressure. Because pets provide people with faithful companionship, research shows they may also provide their owners with greater psychological stability, thus a measure of protection from heart disease. (National Institute of Health Technology Assessment Workshop: Health Benefits of Pets)
Pets Add Life Pets Help to Fight Depression. Pets help fight depression and loneliness, promoting an interest in life. When seniors face adversity or trauma, affection from pets takes on great meaning. Their bonding behavior can foster a sense of security.
Pets Add Life Add joy. Pets are the best! They’re wonderful companions for kids and adults alike. Just think, no matter how bad a day you had, your dog will still love you, your cat will still cuddle you and your fish will still relax you buy swimming in graceful patterns. From canines to cockatoos, felines to fish, tree frogs to turtles, geckos to guinea pigs, owning a pet can bring immeasurable joy to your life.
Pets Add Life Add health. There’s nothing like a wagging tail or a friendly paw on your knee to lift your mood. Pets are therapeutic and we have scientific proof! Seriously, research shows that pets really are good for us humans. They help us fight depression, lower our blood pressure, reduce stress and prevent heart disease. All of which helps to lower health care costs. So there you have it, pets are a daily dose of good health and happiness.
Pets Add Life Add the right pet. Pets are big, small, furry and scaly. Some have lips, some don’t. The point is, every animal has specific needs for feeding, grooming, exercise and health care. You may have an idea of the type of pet you’d like to own. But your choice might not fit your lifestyle. It’s important to consider the demands of your career or your family before buying a pet. For example, if you’re single, work 12-hour days and travel frequently, a dog wouldn’t be the best choice for you. Before getting a pet, do your homework. Pet ownership is a huge responsibility! Don’t become a pet parent unless you’re prepared to take good care of your new baby.

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Dog Clothes: Protection for Your Dog this Winter


Dogs are just like humans in that they do not like wet and cold weather and can suffer in winter time if they do not have the correct protection against the cold weather.  Dog clothes are a wardrobe essential for your four legged friend that keeps them warm and most importantly happy no matter the weather.

Dog clothes are well designed garments that are designed with your dog in mind so that your dog can function in his everyday life whilst staying cozy and comfortable.  Dog clothes are ideal for dogs that fall into the categories listed below;

  • Older/senior dogs
  • Injured or recovering dogs
  • Small dogs as they are closer to the ground and easily get wet
  • Dogs with thin or thinning coats
  • Working dogs
  • Dogs living or working in extreme climates
  • Puppies

  A coat for your dog can provide extra protection and insulation whilst they explore the outdoors and most dogs love the fuss of getting dressed in the winter time.   If your dog has been injured or has suffered from an illness they would benefit from an extra layer of dog clothes when they are out and about as they can reach full health again faster. 

 If your dog is hesitant about going outside they may be feeling the cold so it is important to notice the signs and dress them appropriately. You should always ensure that the clothing item works with the shape of your dog’s body and does not prevent him/her from doing anything they would normally do! 

Visit our Logo Store for the dog hoodie shown

The Thanksgiving Cat


Thanksgiving, for most of us, is a day for family and friends; a pleasant day with lots of great food and often a houseful of guests. However, for your cat, Thanksgiving can be a living nightmare.

With lots of people coming and going, the doorbell ringing constantly, and major changes in the household routine, Thanksgiving can be an extremely stressful time for your cat. Unfortunately, stress and cats do not generally go well together. Stressful situations can make your cat anxious and frightened. They can also cause your cat to become ill. There are many stress-related feline diseases, with interstitial cystitis (urinary tract disease) being among the most common and most well-known of these diseases. Other diseases that can be caused by stress include intestinal diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and even respiratory diseases like asthma can be antagonized by stress. While it may not be practical to keep to your regular household routine on Thanksgiving, there are steps you can take to make your cat more comfortable and reduce the stress level for him.

  • Make sure your cat has a quiet, safe, private area that he can retreat to if he feels the need. This area should be restricted from your house guests so that your cat can rest undisturbed. An unused bedroom or bathroom will work for this purpose.
  • Provide your cat with a litter box and with a food and water station in his safe place. A bed or a soft towel or blanket which keeps your cat comfortable while resting should be provided as well. If your cat is acclimated to his carrier and feels safe there, consider placing his carrier in the safe room with him. Leave the carrier open so that your cat can enter and exit at will.
  • Play a radio, television or CD in your cat’s safe room to provide background noise and mask the sounds of the festivities in other areas of the house. Classical music is a good choice.
  • Feliway is a synthetic pheromone that can be used to reduce your cat’s stress level. It is available as a diffuser or as a spray. Either form is effective and can be used to help calm your cat during stressful periods such as Thanksgiving.
  • There are also other natural remedies, such as Rescue Remedy for Cats, which can be helpful in providing a calming effect for your cat. Never use any remedy for your cat that does not specifically say that is safe for cats on the label. Some medications, natural or pharmaceutical, are safe for dogs but not for cats.
  • If your cat becomes especially anxious or fearful, sedatives such as alprazolam (Xanax) can also be considered, particularly if the natural remedies prove to be ineffective or only partly effective. Talk to your vet about whether this would be appropriate for your cat.

Your cat will thank you for giving him the opportunity to escape from people and activity with which he feels uncomfortable. Of course, there are some cats that enjoy the added attention and the tempting smells that come with Thanksgiving and Thanksgiving dinner. If your cat is in this category, let him enjoy the festivities. Having his own private room or even an open carrier he can sneak away to will still give your cat the opportunity to take a break from the action if he finds it necessary.

 Article Courtesy Dr. Lorie Huston