As we grow older, the need to feel loved and cared for, and to feel appreciated and needed will heighten but not dwindle. Although the family may provide us with these feelings and emotions, one of the best ways of feeling needed and appreciated is by having a pet. These pets can come in canine or feline forms but there are also other pet options. Whether you raise a cat or a dog or a bird or any other pet, they are dependent on their owners for their lives and in return, they provide their owners with the feeling that they are needed, loved, and appreciated. Apart from these feelings, pets add to the lifestyle of any human, whether or not they are seniors.
Benefits of Pets for Seniors
Pets provide seniors with health and emotional benefits. Let’s look at some of these benefits that seniors can add to their lives by having a pet by their side.
According to studies, owning a pet, irrespective of which kind, can help lower your blood pressure and reduce the risk of depression and anxiety. In addition, owning a pet, especially if it is a dog, means you have to walk him, which provides you with exercise as well. This can reduce your risk of high cholesterol and the problems that produce high cholesterol levels. Pets also help you de-stress. This, in turn, can lower your blood pressure levels. So, if you have high blood pressure, you should consider owning a pet. Having someone to talk to and amuse you can stave off depression if you are lonely. If you are not much of a people person, your pet can be your friend. They feel your emotions and offer you comfort in the sweetest of ways when needed. Furthermore, pets also keep you aware of your community and neighborhood. Walking them daily can provide you with much information on what is going on in your surroundings. The best news about owning a pet is that your health care costs are significantly reduced when you have a pet. According to studies, seniors who own pets make very few doctor visits, especially for medical conditions of mild nature.
Responsibilities of Owning a Pet
If you are considering owning a pet, please be aware that it is an enormous responsibility. Animals, as with people, have their own requirements and you must ensure that you can cater to these and fulfil them since your pet depends on you. Make sure that you choose a pet that you can handle. It is advised that elderly people adopt mature and quiet dogs rather than puppies as puppies require more training than adult dogs. Make sure your environment is animal-friendly before you adopt a dog or cat. Although owning a pet is a big responsibility, as a senior, you will be able to reap the rewards and benefit from owning your pet.
If you are living alone, a pet is an excellent choice. However, if you are living in a retirement community, you need to make sure that it is a community where you are allowed to own a pet. If you are considering moving to an active adult community and owning a pet or thinking about it, there are a number of pet-friendly active adult communities for you to choose from. Some of these communities are mentioned below.
- Saguaro Sun – Mesa, AZ
- Cresswind Palm Beach at Westlake – Westlake, FL
- Evergreens at Columbia Town Center – Columbia, MD
- Red Mill Village – Norton, MA
- Pine Crest Estates – Chesterfield, MI
- Sundial – Salem, OR
- Incline at Anthem – Herriman, UT
- Friendly Ridge – Olympia, WA
There are several active adult communities that permit residents to own pets. If you need further assistance with some great retirement communities, you should visit our website, ActiveAdultLiving.com, a comprehensive website of more than 8,400 retirement communities that you can choose from.
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