Owning a dog is one of the most rewarding and exciting things that a person can do in their adult life. Dogs not only provide affection and comfort, but they also provide entertainment and activity, all things that people could use more of; especially seniors.
Seniors may benefit the most from owning a dog. In fact, an in-home senior care service provider pointed out that seniors that owned dogs seemed to be happier and more at ease, despite any unfortunate circumstances that may have impacted their health- both physical and mental. This post will detail some of the major benefits that owning a dog has on seniors’ lives.
The Top 4 Benefits of Owning a Dog in Your Golden Years
No matter the kind of dog that a senior decides to adopt, he or she will provide years of happiness and joy to its owner. Here are the top 4 benefits that owning a dog will have on a senior’s life:
1. Dogs Provide Companionship
Unfortunately, it’s common for seniors to lose their significant other or friends and family due to age. This unfortunate circumstance leaves seniors feeling lonely which can lead to anxiety and depression, especially because most seniors are not able to go out and meet new people as easily as they used to in their younger years. However, adopting a dog can act as a solution to this issue.
Dogs will provide companionship for seniors at all hours of the day. Most dogs are affectionate and simply just want love from their owner. Dogs will provide feelings of comfort, security, and ease to seniors- especially seniors that live alone.
2. They Promote an Active Lifestyle
Depending on the type of dog that one adopts, it will require different levels of activity; however, all dogs require some sort of physical activity which will promote an active lifestyle for the owner.
It’s common for seniors to fall into a lax lifestyle that does not focus on activity; this could cause obesity and joint/bone issues. If a senior adopts a dog, he or she will be able to combat this lifestyle because the dog will need to be walked, taken outside to go to the bathroom, and played with. A dog is a fun way to live an active lifestyle for seniors; a simple daily walk will keep a senior up and moving, preventing him or her from falling into a life of laziness.
3. Dogs are an Incentive to Get Up in the Morning
Similar to promoting an active lifestyle, dogs will also give incentives to seniors to get up in the morning. Seniors that may have lost a loved one or are battling a physical ailment are often tempted to stay in bed and start their day late, doing the bare minimum of what needs to be done in their life. This lifestyle isn’t healthy for their physical or mental well being; however, owning a dog will give them the incentive they need to be productive and get up in the morning.
Owning a dog will make a senior get out of bed to feed the dog and take it out to go to the bathroom in the morning; and once he or she is up, it’s likely that they will be more efficient with their time rather than laying around all day. Dogs will give seniors purpose if they feel that they do not have one; especially if they are struggling with recently losing a loved one.
4. They Increase Sociability
Sometimes seniors tend to keep to themselves and not go out as much as they should; this has a direct impact on their social skills and their mental health. Dogs are a great way to get seniors out and socializing, even if it is only for a few minutes a day. Dogs need to be walked, taken to the vet and groomers, and need food; all of these needs require seniors to leave their homes and interact with people in order to provide a good life for their dog.
Find the Dog That is Right For You
If you are a senior yourself or are close with a senior in your life, keep these benefits of owning a dog in mind. Owning a dog may create emotions of happiness and excitement that you didn’t know you were missing out on. As you think about getting a dog, do proper research in order to find the dog breed that is right for you and your wants, needs, and capabilities.