Getting a Pet: Worthwhile Benefits for Seniors

As you age, it can be difficult to find ways to stay active and engaged with the world around you.
A pet can offer an easy solution, providing companionship and giving you purpose on a daily
basis. From helping you remain physically active to reducing stress and providing comfort and
security, Pacific Pups Rescue explains how having a pet can improve your mental and physical
health as a senior:

Enjoying a More Active Lifestyle
Owning a pet can give you the motivation necessary to get up and start moving each day. Going
for walks outside or playing fetch in the house are excellent ways to get some exercise while
bonding with your furry friend. Plus, if you have a dog, you’ll be able to explore places that may
have been off-limits before. Spending time outdoors is beneficial for humans and animals alike!

While you’re at it, think about how you can return the favor and keep your furry companion
healthy. Feeding your pet high-quality food is crucial to their health and well-being. Look for food
made from natural, nutritious ingredients with no added chemicals or preservatives.
Quality pet food should contain proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and other essential
nutrients tailored to the animal’s unique needs. You might try a grain-free product, which can be
easier for pets to digest. Grain-free kibble is sure to please and will provide your pup with a
protein-rich diet from animal sources like poultry, meat, and fish.

Helping You Focus on the Present
Having something else to focus on besides themselves — like tending to another living being —
can help seniors move their attention away from worrying about the past or stressing about the
future. Pets have a way of reminding us that every moment matters, giving us reason to stop
and appreciate our surroundings rather than focusing on things we cannot change. As such, our
furry companions can help us enjoy life’s little pleasures more often while also helping us stay
grounded in reality.

Being Safer at Home
Pets provide much-needed safety and security for seniors living alone at home. Many people
choose dogs because they make fantastic guardians of the home; even if it’s just barking when
someone comes close, the warning is usually enough for intruders to move on elsewhere. If you
are unable or uncomfortable owning a large dog, smaller breeds like pugs or Chihuahuas make
great watch dogs as well!
If you’re a senior concerned about transitioning to assisted living with a pet by your side, you
should see what is available in your area. Many communities are pet-friendly these days, so
your beloved companion can come along to the new home.

Reduced Stress

Johns Hopkins Medicine points out that owning pets can reduce levels of stress hormones like
cortisol significantly compared to those who don’t own pets. Being around animals has also
been linked with increased release of serotonin, which helps improve our moods while
decreasing feelings of loneliness or depression — all without medication! Pets also encourage
relaxation through activities like cuddling or stroking fur; Cherrelyn Animal Hospital notes that
these activities can have calming effects similar to massage therapy.

More Purpose in Your Life
Nothing cures boredom like having someone else in your life that needs your love and care!
Pets make wonderful companions who always greet you with enthusiasm when you come home

from work or errands. Taking care of them can give you something meaningful to focus your
energy on besides yourself, not to mention their unconditional love is unrivaled by anything else!

Summary
At the end of the day, having a pet in your life as a senior can provide you with countless mental
and physical health benefits. Whether it’s enjoying an active lifestyle together outside or
spending quality time inside cuddling up by the fire, your furry friend can give you unmatched
companionship!
Just make sure you’re prepared for the responsibility of caring for an animal. Invest in high-
quality dog food, develop a consistent exercise routine, and find a reputable veterinarian in your
area. And get ready for one of life‘s greatest gifts — a loyal companion who will shower you with
affection!

 

Image via Pexels

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