Study of 1 million Swedish children finds first conclusive evidence that exposure to dogs early in life reduces risk of developing asthma.
Adam Rifkin stashed this in Pets!
No one knows why, but the correlation is there.
The unprecedented size of this study also allowed the researchers to control for potential confounding variables, such as asthma in parents, area of residence and socioeconomic status. As a result, this is some of the most conclusive research ever presented on the effect of animal ownership early in a child's life on the development of certain disorders.
Note also: Even exposure to a farm or petting zoo in the first year of life helps.