It’s becoming more and more common for elderly people to adopt a dog, particularly if they are living alone or simply want the companionship that a pet provides. Most people think about puppies when they consider pet adoption, but soon grow frustrated with their toilet training, chewing, and high energy needs. Elderly adults that desire a dog that is loyal, calm, well-trained and friendly should seriously consider adopting a senior dog. Adopting a senior pet has never been more important, and facilities across the country are opening their doors to get people acquainted with all kinds of special senior dogs.
A senior dog is one that is considered to be in the last 25 percent of its life, based on the lifespan of the dog breed. In general, this means dogs that are around 9 years old. Senior dogs often end up at shelters or rescue groups because their owners have abandoned them, died, or outgrown them as their family has changed. Senior dogs are most likely to be the first to be euthanized at a shelter because of their low adoption rates.
The good news is that senior dogs are the ideal pet for senior citizens for a number of reasons. Because senior dogs are well beyond the puppy stage, their training is complete. They don’t need to release a lot of energy or be toilet trained. Instead, senior dogs love gentle play and long naps, which mesh with an elderly person’s lifestyle much better. Senior dogs are generally mellow and happy to sit on the lap or at the feet of their owners. Other reasons to match elderly people with senior dogs include the fact that they are loyal and friendly, with fewer demands on their owners than younger dogs.
There are plenty of health benefits that elderly adults can get via dog ownership. Studies show that owners of dogs are more physically active and overall healthier than those without dogs. Interacting with a dog can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, decrease heart rate and even sleep better at night. Dogs are good for an elderly person’s mental health as well. Researchers have found that people with dogs experience a reduced risk of depression and anxiety, plus stress-related mental issues. Senior dogs are also excellent companions for aging adults, reducing loneliness and isolation.
Family caregivers that are thinking about finding a dog for their elderly relative should definitely consider a senior dog. Even if the elderly person can’t take complete care of the dog on their own, there are senior care aides, friends and family members that can help. They will get along fine as they enjoy leisurely walks, casual play, long naps, cuddling and caring for one another. Because senior dogs aren’t demanding the time and attention that younger dogs do, it makes them an excellent fit for an elderly person that isn’t as mobile or active as they used to be.
Family caregivers and elderly adults that are interested in adding a pet to the household should not overlook the excellent qualities that a senior dog can bring to the family. Senior pets make amazing companions for everyone, especially the elderly.
If You Or An Aging Loved One Are Considering Hiring Senior Care in St. Pete Beach, FL, Please Contact The Caring Staff At Assisting Hands Home Care Today! 727-748-4211.