As many of us know, pets are wonderful for so many reasons. They make great companions, are constantly looking out for us, and can lift our moods in the darkest of times. But, with all of that said, they can also be a lot of work. Many pets are high energy and in need of constant attention. This can sometimes make it challenging for some people to have a pet of their own, specifically the elderly. But what’s life without a special little furry friend to keep you company? Truth be told, pet ownership has been shown to provide tremendous benefits for elderly care takers. According to AgingCare.com, “Animals can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and increase social interaction and physical activity.”
As you take this information into consideration either for yourself or a loved one, it’s important to know which pet might be best suited for an elderly owner. Keep reading to find out!
Will my senior benefit from getting a pet?
Before getting a pet for yourself or an elderly loved one, it is important to consider whether getting a pet is the right move. Although it is true that many seniors can end up feeling lonely in their older age, some are very content living a simple and quiet life. If that’s you or your loved one, a pet may not be the best choice. However, if the senior in your life is searching for a new lease on life, then a pet is definitely the way to go.
Which pet is best?
Now that you know getting a pet is the right choice, consider the many different kind of pets that might be best suited for an elderly person. Perhaps most obvious is the cat. At most any age, cats are easy to care for as they do not need to be let out or taken on walks. They also love to cuddle! Certain smaller dogs can also be great companions for the elderly. Breeds such as the Cocker Spaniel and Schipperke are low maintenance and loving according to Science101.com.
One unlikely pet that is great for seniors are birds. Like cats, birds are easy to care for and can form strong bonds with their owners with the proper care.
How old should the pet be?
Perhaps the most important consideration to make when getting a pet for you or your elderly loved one is the animal’s age. Of course, all animals have different temperaments and energy levels which is why it’s important to get to know your specific pet before making an official purchase. However, older pets are the safest bet when it comes to the elderly. The older the pet, the more calm and low maintenance it is likely to be.
This is actually great news for shelter animals! Unfortunately, many elderly pets at shelters are overlooked. By adopting an older shelter pet for you or the senior in your life, you can provide a stable and loving home to the animals most in need of one.
Change the life of a senior by adopting a shelter pet! Be it a cat a bird a dog or something unusual, the elderly are sure to benefit.