Pet Ownership for the Elderly

For most peoples’ life times, pets provide us with endless love and companionship bringing great joy into our lives. They become part of our families, and for the elderly, pets can mean the world-providing physical and emotional well-being. Pets can do wonders and play a key role in a seniors overall health.

Seniors who are pet owners come across many benefits, some you might be surprised with. Pets not only provide emotional benefits of companionship, but they also help seniors stay physically healthy too. Owning a pet can reduce feelings of anxiety, loneliness, and depression allowing them to lead more satisfying, emotional lives. They can also have positive effects on behavior. A review of several studies found that nursing home residents become more alert and relaxed when pets are nearby. Pet ownership is also associated with improved cardiovascular health lowering levels of blood pressure,  triglycerides and cholesterol.

Even though having an animal around can offer several benefits for seniors, owning one certainly isn’t for everyone, especially those who have never been a pet owner before. Some animals are full of energy and need a lot of attention, not to mention being fed and looked after regularly. If this is something that may be difficult for your loved one to handle, you may want to rethink having them become an animal owner. There are agencies you can look into that offer pet visits, also known as pet therapy. On the other hand, if you’re loved-one has had pet experience before, take into consideration a furry friend that will be best suited for them and their lifestyle.