Texas Senior Care and Housing Directory
Texas Senior Care and Housing Directory


The Healing Power of Pets for Seniors

Health Benefits of Pet Ownership
The Challenges and Benefits of Pet Ownership for Seniors

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Pets can play an important role in our lives as we age. As we grow older, knowing that you're loved, or that someone cares about you, isn't necessarily enough, and that need to feel needed-and appreciated for what you do-increases.

There's a strong connection between pets and the elderly. Pets fulfill this need because they depend on their owners for care and attention. In return, the pets offer love and unqualified approval.

Pets and Older Adults

Studies have been documented that petting a dog or cat lowers blood pressure in hypertensive patients and that older people show improved alertness when caring for a pet. Pets often seem to be especially valuable for some people experiencing major life chances, such as illness or the loss of a loved one.Why are pets important to seniors.

Depressions can often be avoided. Pets also encourage their owner to be more physically active  by playing with them or taking them on a walk. Pets amuse us, make us laugh and improve our overall morale.

Pet owners tend to remain more interested in events in their community and in their surroundings. They are not as lonely as perhaps they once were. They prevent or reduce absent-mindedness or bewilderment by communicating the sense of time and by maintaining a rhythm of the day. "forget oneself and ones problems" and to "live one's free time in a meaningful and interesting way".

Pets need love, companionship and attention no differently than the rest of us. If you know of an older adult that could use a friend, a companion, please consider contacting one of the adoption or fostering agencies below. 

Best dogs for older pet owners

What are the best dogs for seniors you might ask. Do you want a dog that requires little in the way of grooming?

List of the best dog breeds for seniors as they are all short haired:

Maltese -Chihuahua - Yorkshire Terrier - Pomeranian - Shih Tzu - Pug - Boston Terrier - Beagle - Dachshund.

Older Dogs vs. Puppies

Older dogs are better than puppies for a retired person. They are beyond the crazy puppy stage and many have already been trained to walk on a leash, obey basic commands and eliminate in appropriate places. This is not always the case, so it is important to learn as much about the background of any dog you are considering as you can.

Senior Pet Adoption and Fostering Agencies

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO ADOPTING A DOG - So you're looking at adopting a dog?
Welcome to the journey of pet parenthood. We know how tough the process of getting a new pet can be, so we've put together a guide for first-time pet-adopters to make things a little easier.

Old Friends Senior Dog Sanctuary - While providing lifetime homes for senior dogs, OFSDS strives to raise awareness of the joys and challenges of living with older dogs. We are a 501(c)(3), non-profit organization. We do not concern ourselves with the quantity of time that they have left, rather the quality of the life that we can provide them for that time.

Adopt a Senior Pet -  Adopt an older dog or cat. Senior pets still have love to give! This non-profit Senior Pet Adoption service is sponsored by the pet lovers at Purnia and Advantage II.

Paws Companions - Seniors for Seniors - PAWS' Seniors for Seniors adoption program is all about senior humans rediscovering the joys of having a cat or dog in their lives. The program places senior cats and dogs (typically over 7 years of age) with senior citizens who are 60 years of age or older.

The Silver Paws Program connects mature pet lovers with homeless mature pets. Part of AARF's overall foster program network, Silver Paws foster parents participate in foster orientations and trainings with other fosters, which can serve as an antidote to the isolation many mature adults face. The program covers the cost of veterinary care, food and supplies for the foster pets, alleviating the financial concerns that are common.

Senior woman with cat

Pet Food Assistance Programs

For struggling pet owners, providing pet food can be the difference between being able to keep a cherished pet and being forced to surrender him or her. Below are some agencies that can help:


* * * Some Meals on Wheels programs provides assistance through their AniMeals Pet Food Program offering food and care for the pets of their homebound clients.

Seniors Traveling With Pets

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DISCLAIMER: Links to other websites or references to products, services or publications do not imply the endorsement or approval of such websites, products, services or publications by Elder Options of Texas. The determination of the need for senior care services and the choice of a facility is an extremely important decision. Please make your own independent investigation.

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