From Every Dog Is a Rescue Dog by John Dickerson in Atlantic:
The walk is the basic unit of the human-and-dog commerce of unconditional love. We take care of George and George takes care of us. No matter how awful the day, or how awful I am behaving at any given moment, George doesn’t care. He finds me smoldering in my chair and dashes to my lap. Every dog is a rescue dog.
This isn’t mere sentiment. Scientists have studied the matter and found that when humans and dogs interact, stress levels in both parties decrease. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, but if they were a new discovery, imagine the commercial opportunities. Their cortisol-lowering properties would put a dog-petting station between every yoga studio and CBD store.
Considered correctly, the daily dog walks are a regimen of escape and pause. They enlarge our sympathies and sweeten our disposition. They pry open the day when it balls up into a little fist.