Several scientific studies have shown the health benefits of pet ownership. Simple petting can lower a person's blood pressure or reduce stress levels.
In the U.S., two federal laws grant special rights to some owners of emotional support animals.
The Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA) establishes a procedure for modifying "no pets" policies in most types of housing to permit a person with a disability or a person who is elderly to keep a pet for emotional support. The qualified applicant sends a written request of reasonable accommodation to the landlord along with a letter from a physician. If the landlord refuses the request for accommodation, a complaint can be filed with the department of Housing and Urban Development or with the U.S. Department of Justice.
In housing that allows pets but charges supplemental rent or deposits for them, some jurisdictions and individual companies will waive these fee for ESAs.
The Air Carrier Access Act establishes a procedure for modifying pet policies on aircraft to permit a person with a disability to travel with a prescribed emotional support animal so long as they have appropriate documentation and the animal is not a danger to others and does not interfere with others (through unwanted attention, barking, inappropriate toileting, etc.).
Patients' sex and emotional support as predictors of death and clinical deterioration in the Waiting for a New Heart Study: results from the 1-year follow-up
Jun 01, 2011; Context-Little is known about the role of patient's sex and emotional support in the prognosis of heart transplant candidates....