Having the pleasure of owning a dog, cat, or other pet can make life seem brighter, happier, and more exciting. If you have a older family member who is in need of companionship, consider getting him or her a pet. The friendship that can blossom from a lovable cat or dog can truly be a bright spot in an elderly individual’s life. In this blog, we’ll discuss a few reasons why a pet’s companionship can be an incredible and invaluable gift for your older loved one. If you need help with daily activities then you can choose a friend or family member to care for you under the CDPAP program if you qualify. We at LifeCare Advantage, LLC offer quality and excellent care for our clients and are one of the leading Medicaid CDPAP programs in New York State. Contact LifeCare Advantage, LLC to learn more about the CDPAP program today!

Companionship

As people age, they often become lonely and feel cut off from society. This feeling can lead to depression, lethargy, apathy, and sadness. Physical problems can also ensue, such as muscle atrophy, tiredness, and joint stiffness. A pet can draw the elderly person out of this slump and require him or her to go outside for walks and play times. Fresh air, sunlight, and getting out of the house can do wonders for the emotions and the body, and it is usually more enjoyable for the individual because he or she is spending time with his or her pet.

Living alone can also be extremely lonely, and it can sometimes make an elderly person feel overwhelmed by emptiness. Having a beloved pet to come home to can brighten a lonely life immeasurably. He or she will also feel needed, which can breathe a sense of purpose into an older individual.

Routine

A pet will add routine into a life somewhat devoid of it. A dog needs to be walked at certain times and cats require a feeding schedule as well. Having a reason to wake up in the morning is important and can add structure to a day. A senior citizen can also plan times to walk to a local dog park for some exercise and conversation with other dog owners. Adding a routine can seem simplistic, but it can be revolutionary for an elderly individual. Multiple walks outside is also great exercise for senior citizens, and can reduce the risk of disease and illnesses.

Protection

Living alone isn’t only lonely, it’s also sometimes scary. A dog can be trained to protect the older homeowner and bring a sense of safety to the house. Knowing that a four-legged friend is guarding the door and on the lookout for strangers or intruders can help an elderly person feel protected. A dog can even be trained to call for emergency help or dial a neighbor’s phone number if needed, and a pet can alert you to smoke, fire, or other issues that could be harmful or deadly. Also, if your older loved one enjoys walks or bike rides, a trained pet can be brought along to protect him or her.

How Do You Know Which Pet is Right for Your Loved One?

If your elderly relative is interested in a pet but not sure why type to choose, a few questions to consider include:

Is Your Loved One Mobile?

If your family member struggles with walking due to health issues or injuries, a dog that requires many walks might not be the best choice. An elderly individual with limited mobility might do better with a cat or a dog who is also older. Cats can get exercise from playing with toy mice, scratching posts, and other toys and don’t require regular walks. A feline companion is also perfect for cuddling and petting.

Have You Had a Pet Before?

If your loved one has never had a pet, a rambunctious dog could be overwhelming and might leave a bad taste in his or her mouth. A gentle, older dog or cat might be the perfect companion for a first foray into a furry friendship. Rescuing an elderly pet from a local pet shelter can also be a saving grace. Pets older than two years are often overlooked since they aren’t as cute or desired as puppies or kittens.

One Pet or Two?

Cats are often lonely if he or she is the only animal at home. Adopting multiples may seem stressful at the time, but two or more pets may even be more fun. Your loved one may be worried that he or she might not be able to provide enough companionship, especially if he or she is gone for long hours at a time.

A pet can bring joy and purpose to an elderly individual’s daily life. If your loved one seems lonely and could benefit from a furry companion, talk with him or her about the possibility of adopting a loveable pet. It could be exactly what they need to add an element of love and friendship back into their life. If you are in need of a compassionate and dedicated at-home assistant in New York State, call LifeCare Advantage LLC today. We proudly offer only the best at-home care and are willing to work with you. For an incredible CDPAP program located in Brooklyn, New York, LifeCare Advantage is the choice for you. Contact our experienced staff for more information now!