Evid Based Nurs 16:103 doi:10.1136/eb-2012-101046
  • Child health
  • Cohort study

Contact with dogs during the first year of life is associated with decreased risk of respiratory illness

Editor's Choice
  1. Anne C van der Gugten
  1. Department of Paediatric Pulmonology, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital, University Medical Centre Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to : Cornelis K van der Ent
    Department of Paediatric Pulmonology, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital, University Medical Center Utrecht, Lundlaan 6, Utrecht 3508 AB, The Netherlands; K.vanderent{at}

Commentary on:

Implications for practice and research

  • Early dog contacts are associated with fewer respiratory infections in infants, especially otitis, but not wheezing after adjustment for possible confounders.

  • Early animal contacts are important, possibly leading to changes in immune development and a better resistance to infectious respiratory diseases in infants.

  • Future research is needed to explore the mechanism of the favourable effect of dog exposure and whether similar results occur over a longer period.


Several groups have studied the associations between animal contacts early in life and asthma and allergic diseases in childhood.1 Reports on the association between pet exposure …

No Related Web Pages

Free Sample

This recent issue is free to all users to allow everyone the opportunity to see the full scope and typical content of EBN.
View free sample issue >>

EBN Journal Chat

The EBN Journal Chat offers readers the opportunity to participate in discussion about research articles and commentaries from Evidence Based Nursing (EBN).

How to participate >>

Don't forget to sign up for content alerts so you keep up to date with all the articles as they are published.

Navigate This Article