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How Pets Impact the Senior Aging Journey

All Things Pawsitive

There’s nothing like walking through the door of your home and being greeted by those puppy dog eyes and a wagging tail. Growing up, many seniors cherished famous companions such as; Lassie, Old Yeller, Toto & Beethoven whom most likely inspired you to own a dog of your own throughout your life. At Clearwater Living, our communities offer a pet-friendly environment and welcome your four-legged friends! *

In honor of National Dog Day on August 26th we’ve compiled a list of benefits that pet ownership has for seniors. Studies have been reporting for decades on the impact that a furry friend has on the overall well-being of all ages, including the senior population.

According to multiple studies published by US News & World Reports and The American Heart Association there are several benefits that correlate with seniors owning a pet including, but not limited to the following:

  • Increased physical activity & social life
  • Healthier heart
  • Lower stress levels
  • Companionship & security
  • Ease depression and anxiety
  • Live a longer, happier life
  • Routine
  • Sense of purpose

Choosing the right animal

A majority of seniors select smaller dogs, cats and even birds to be their roommate in life. It’s vital to recognize the factors involved with older adults choosing the right pet for their lifestyle. Are you disabled? Have you owned a pet before? Not keen of change? Active? Cats are easier to take care of with less overall maintenance whereas select dog breeds may need more walking than others.

In general, it’s recommended for seniors to choose an older dog at least 2 years of age who is house trained to make the addition to their home seamless. Smaller dog breeds tend to be preferred for older adults living in senior communities like a Yorkie, Shi Tzu, Maltese, Poodle or Pug.

If pet ownership is not for you, there are other ways you can connect with fur friends through pet therapy by visiting a local animal shelter or volunteering for a foundation.

Pets leave paw prints on your heart

Clearwater Living knows how important you and your pet’s health are, so we offer an exclusive dog park on-site and/or dog walking groups at some of our communities.

* To learn more about pet services and amenities offered, click here for a list of the community nearest you.

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