pets help seniors

Loving Relationship: How Pets Help Seniors

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Our caregivers are often asked by our clients’ families if pets help seniors with loneliness. The truth is that pets work wonders – beyond just providing good company.

When a senior is considering getting a new pet, it can promote research and reading up on a breed – a mentally stimulating exercise in itself. A fun project to research and to anticipate – like the arrival of a new baby.

  • Pets can actually lower blood pressure and cholesterol level of its owner.
  • Pets tend to promote physical activity – walking the pet, cleaning up after the pet, etc.
  • Pets actually benefit from being adopted by a senior, as this age group typically has more time to dedicate to the pet.
  • Research shows that pet owners make 21% fewer visits to the doctor.
  • Seniors tend to take better care of themselves when they are also in charge of a pet’s well being
  • Yes – pets fight off loneliness. They tend to ease the loss of a loved one and lower the rate of depression.
  • Pets can make one feel safer when home alone.

Pets and seniors can be a great pairing. While we love the positive effects that pets can have on seniors, there are some considerations that we’d suggest when selecting a 4pet:

  • Is money an issue? Pets definitely add a regular expense to the monthly bill.
  • Look for a healthy pet – one that won’t compromise a senior’s own health issues.
  • Consider a therapy pet if you or your senior need assistance.
  • Are there physical limitations to consider? Some pets (such as cats and birds) aren’t as physically demanding on its owner as a dog may be.
  • Adult dogs generally are a better choice as they have a known health history and they are likely past the training stage, which can be expensive and taxing.
  • One may want to consider a non-shedding dog. A good idea for both allergy issues and clean-up needed.
  • Smaller can better. Larger dogs require more exercise and energy. A smaller dog may be more practical.Research shows that pets help seniors battle the most serious disease they face…loneliness. Pets offer the affection, unconditional love and companionship that anyone and everyone craves. For more information, visit the Pets for the Elderly Foundation at