Owning a dog is one of the most rewarding tasks in life. No matter your age, or what kind of dog you adopt, owning a dog will provide you with years of happiness, love, and companionship. With that being said, being a dog owner is a great thing to be for anybody, but it can be particularly beneficial for seniors.
There are many benefits to owning a dog when it comes to seniors. If you are an elderly person and are thinking about adopting a dog, this post will detail the top three reasons why that’s a good idea and why owning a dog as an older person is a rewarding experience.
What Are the Pros of Owning a Dog as a Senior?
It’s important to point out that before adopting a dog, seniors should make sure that they are capable of caring for the dog. Seniors should think about their physical capabilities, their financial situation, and perhaps most importantly, their living situation.
If a senior adopts a dog and he or she does not live in a place that allows pets, or there are restrictions, the dog could end up in a shelter. For example, one senior living community in NJ allows for pets, while other senior living communities in the surrounding areas do not. It’s important for seniors to think about this aspect of life before adopting a dog; and as long as the living environment is accepting and practical for a dog, here are the top 3 benefits of adopting and owning a dog as an elderly person.
1. You’ll Stay Active
Owning a dog will keep any person active. Depending on the dog breed, the activity levels will vary, however, all dogs require some sort of outdoor walk and playtime which will keep the dog owner active as well.
Some seniors find it hard to stay active. Some seniors either lack the motivation to stay active while others simply don’t know how to get up and moving in a way that is easy on their aging body; dogs are a great solution. Seniors will have to care for their dog which will get them out and about, preventing them from sitting down all day and living a very lax lifestyle that many seniors grow too accustomed to. Seniors should think about their physical capabilities when it comes to choosing a dog with a high activity level, as some seniors may not be able to handle a dog that needs constant walking and exercise. Some dog breeds to consider if you are a senior that wants a mildly active dog include:
- French Bulldog
- King Charles Cavalier Spaniel
- Tibetan Spaniel
- Basset Hound
2. You Won’t Feel Lonely
Unfortunately, it’s very common for seniors to feel lonely, especially if they have lost their significant other or don’t live close to friends and family. Similarly, many seniors don’t want to or know how to go about meeting people, making their golden years lonely and uneventful. If you are struggling with feelings of loneliness, consider adopting a dog.
Dogs will provide companionship and affection to seniors, while also giving them a reason to get out of bed every morning. Some dogs are more affectionate than others, but simply having another living being in the house will combat any feelings of loneliness that you or any other senior living alone may be feeling.
3. Dogs Can Be a Form of Protection
Dogs are outstanding means of security for a home and can be practically great for seniors that either live alone or maybe hard of hearing. Dogs will protect seniors from any intruders and have the ability to alert their owner if something is out of the ordinary if he or she can not hear.
Seniors will be able to rest easy knowing that their home is being protected by their furry companion.
Find the Dog Breed That is Right For You
If you have decided that adopting a dog is right for you, make sure to do research to find the dog breed that will be ideal for your living situation and your capabilities. Look into a variety of different breeds to ensure you adopt the kind that will improve your life the most.
About the Author
Kelsey Simpson enjoys writing about things that can help others. She lives in South Jersey and is the proud companion to two German Shepherds and spends her free time volunteering in dog shelters.