In honor of the Petaluma Animal Services, Clear the Shelter Program, PPSC invites you to understand the Healing Power of Pets – Senior to Senior adoptions are always free. Flyer attached: CTSPEP 2016
For seniors pet owners, who often live alone, pets can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, increase social interaction and physical activity and help them learn.
Pets provide other intangible benefits. Dogs—and other pets—live very much in the here and now. They don’t worry about tomorrow. And tomorrow can be very scary for an older person. By having an animal with that sense of now, it tends to rub off on people.
And pets can reduce depression and lessen loneliness. Older pet owners have often told us how incredibly barren and lonely their lives were without their pet’s companionship, even when there were some downsides to owning an active pet.
Pets benefit, too, particularly when older folks adopt older pets. Since most of the adopters are retired, they have lots of time to devote to an older pet.
Here are some things consider if you are a senior who is adopting a senior pet:
- Right pet for the right owner. Because people age so differently, the decision needs to be made carefully—and not just by grown loving children who think it sounds like a way to provide camaraderie.
- Are you set in your ways? If you don’t like change, you may not be a good candidate.
- Have you had a pet before? For senior adoptions it’s best if the senior person is an experienced pet owner.
- Do you have disabilities? Dogs can be wonderful companions who encourage a senior with no major physical limitations to walk and interact with others.
- Does the pet have a good temperament? Pets who require behavior training, like socialization to other people, may not be the best fit for a senior unless they are experienced and confident about handling a pet who may startle easily.
- Is the pet healthy?
- One pet or two? While multiple pets can keep each other company, that may not be a good idea for an older person.
- Are finances an issue? Pets deserve good care, including healthy diet and vet care.
Where to find the pet. Because pets from breeders are considerably expensive, consider a rescue: some shelters also provide a pet for less and offer the advantage of rescuing it from euthanasia. Our friends at the Petaluma Animal Services can help you find a good match. 707-778-PETS www.petalumaanimalshelter.org