Pets for Seniors: 5 Amazing Health Benefits

1. Pets Motivate Mindful Living

Pets, especially dogs, live in the present moment. Rather than worrying about the future, pets for seniors motivate mindful living. In other words, they like to stop and smell the roses. Sometimes literally!

Let’s face it, the future is guaranteed for no one and that’s a scary thought. But age can intensify the habit of worrying. Especially worrying about what tomorrow may bring.

Having a pet can help your loved one enjoy life in the here and now, possibly even lengthening their life.

2. Pets Lower Blood Pressure

When it comes to pets for seniors, even the American Heart Association is on board. Though heart disease is still a high ranking cause of death in the elderly, owning a pet can lower that risk. In fact, studies show that elderly people who own pets tend to have lower blood pressure.

If a heart attack does happen, pet owners have been known to recover faster and carry a greater chance of surviving the heart attack overall.

Along the same lines, pets also offers a great opportunity for physical exercise to seniors. Your aging friend or family member is more likely to go for a stroll with a dog than a person. After all, people don’t stare at you with big puppy eyes, persisting to go torment squirrels.

3. Pets Stimulate Brain Function

Interacting with a pet can help to stimulate brain function. For example, new pet owners often want to read up on the particular breed they chose. You can even find them diving into research and reviews about pet food and supplies.

Pets for seniors stimulate parts of the brain that wouldn’t otherwise be stimulated. While many elderly tend to stay indoors or even live in solitude, pets motivated socialization.

Having a pet can even increase memory recall. Your aging loved one may experience a newly invigorated memories, awakening a brilliant vitality.

4. Pets Promote Faster Healing

Pets can help people recover, both old and the young. Whether it’s healing physically, mentally, or emotionally, pets for seniors, in particular, can provide a unique boost in courage to push through pain.

Like mentioned before, life can become frightening as time goes by. The elderly frequently face health concerns, financial worries, and a barrage of unknowns. Having a pet can help to calm your loved one and offer them constant support.

After undergoing intense medical procedures or experiencing the death of a friend or partner, pets can provide a special kind of distraction to the elderly. Rather than focusing on their own pain, your aging loved one can redirect their attention to caring for their pet.

5. Pets Balance Hormone Levels

As during any era of life, stress has the tendency to sneak in and try to take over. The stress hormone cortisol can easily make your aging friend or family member feel overwhelmed.

But scratching a dog behind the ears or stroking a purring cat actually decreases cortisol levels. Pets for seniors act as the anti-stress remedy in that they stimulate the brain to release the hormone oxytocin.

As you may know, oxytocin is the happy hormone that also encourages bonding. Not only can this hormone make your loved one happy, but it also offers a sense of emotional security.

If you’re ready to explore the benefits of getting a pet for your senior loved one, please contact me. I can help guide you in how to best care and interact with them.