How Having a Pet Can Positively Affect Seniors’ Well-being



People just love to have pets from fishes to cats to dogs and anything that will tickle their fancy. When it comes to the elderly it goes beyond just enjoying pets. Having a pet helps the senior focus on other matters than their physical issues and negative thoughts about loss or aging.

Pets are a bundle of joy and great companions. When you cuddle them, they will reciprocate; give them basic instructions and they will sit or roll-over; they will listen if you talk to them, and when you are sick and lonely, you have a friend by your side during trying times.

Even if there are some downsides to pet ownership the health benefits can be far-reaching to elders here are some of them:


As we grow older loneliness creeps in, depression follows and physical problems make matters worse. Pets create good feelings and lift the state of mind. The loving friendship offered by a pet lessen loneliness and melancholy for senior pet parents who may end up spending time alone. Your furry friend will be at your side any time of the day or night to interact and talk with you.

Having a routine

Owning a dog comes with responsibility, the daily schedule of caring for a pet can give purpose. Perhaps, you want to lay on the bed, but Fido keeps on yapping because he is hungry, so you get up and feed him. Isn’t that something to be thankful for?

Animals have a “here and now” attitude, it’s contagious and very useful for seniors. They are dependent on their master like a child to a parent without the proper care they will not survive.


People who engage in any regular physical exercise improved their health condition regardless of age. It is difficult to get into the usual workout and so very easy to avoid it. Your pooch will remind you that strolling is a regular part of your daily schedule.

Pet owners are more active, they have lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels compared to those who do not have pets. Their heartbeat improved due to increased exercise. An elderly is less likely to be obese with at least a couple of hours a week of walking to meet their pet’s needs.


Elderly pet owners are less stressed than their pet-less counterparts. Perhaps it’s the companionship where a friend is by their side at any time to share life’s challenges. Or the daily walks that improve their health condition. Or the funny antics that make them laugh when they wake up.

Help people socialize

Having a pet that regularly requires outdoor activity will help you stay connected with life. Visits to the park to walk a dog or taking the cat to the veterinarian Las Vegas will expose the elderly to other people with the same interest. Pet clubs and meet-ups are great ways of interacting with people.

A pet will get you involved with activities giving you the opportunity to make new friends and take your mind away from problems. Bring Fido to a hospice for the elderly or people with special needs and you’ll be glad you did aside from making new acquaintances you’ll make people happy.

Emotional support

Petting a dog, cat, or other pets can serve as an emotional support system to the elderly giving them care acceptance, importance, and support. These lovelies can be enjoyable for people who are rarely visited by their friends and loved ones.

Pets make seniors feel less isolated and lonely.

Unconditional love and affection

These are the two important things that are missing in the lives of the elderly. Younger family members are preoccupied with running their own lives and can’t squeeze in a visit and spend time with their elder.

A pet can fill the void by showing their love and affection without anything in return.

Stimulates memory

Pets have the ability to stimulate better memory recall to their elderly owners. When seniors with memory loss interact with animals they recover memories from way back. A pet will have them focus on other things than their problems allowing them to ponder on events that have good memories.



Just as companionship, loyalty, and understanding are important to teens, the same holds true for seniors. An elder’s journey has a lot of humps and bumps along the way. The simple act of a dog at their feet or cuddling a cat can make a big difference in the life of an aged person.

A dog will provide security to their elderly pet parent. Fido might be small but packs a mean bark and thieves do not know that. So, they will avoid your house to avoid any encounter with a ferocious dog.

Contributed by James Watson from Pet Health Hospital

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