the pros and the cons

To prevent our elders from feeling alone and isolated, some of us do not hesitate to offer them a pet, usually a cat or a dog. But is it really a good idea? If so, how to choose it well? Answers.

The benefits of an animal when you are old

Welcoming an animal into your home is not insignificant. It takes a certain long-term commitment as well as a good dose of patience and tolerance. But animals have a positive effect on the health of their owners. Indeed, they provide a highly appreciable presence when the person has difficulty moving around. They also allow you to have a social ways. Depression can thus be avoided.

Dogs can encourage outings and therefore promote meetings and the practice of physical activity thanks to the need to make them take daily walks. Cats have the ability to relax their owner thanks to their purr. In any case, having a pet allows an elderly person to to feel useful because she is responsible for the well-being of her little ball of fur. She therefore has more reason to get up in the morning and can thus establish a routine made up of benchmarks related to the animal: giving meals three times a day, going out in the morning and evening, cleaning the litter once a week…

In addition, older people have time to take care of a cat or dog. They are therefore the people most likely to make an animal happy. Shelters are full ofabandoned animals or abused of a certain age and only asking to find a home to end their days where they can simply rest and be loved.

The disadvantages of an animal when you are old

Adopting a pet at a certain age can be scary. We wonder if we will not die before him and leave him an orphan, if we will not be forced to abandon him when the time comes for the retirement home or if we are really capable of taking care of him.

dog elderly hug
Credits: iStock

Moreover, the elderly do not always have the physical capacity necessary to take care of an animal. Indeed, you have to play with him, take him out, take him to the vet… It can be very tiring. In addition, an animal that falls ill can cause a lot of trouble and worries to a person who is already in poor health themselves.

Which animal to choose when you are old?

If the elderly person to whom you want to offer an animal is not able to walk alone and is not in good physical shape, forget the idea of ​​the dog. Indeed, a dog requires time not only to be educated but also to spend. If he pulls on the leash during walks, his owner may not be able to restrain him.

Whether you opt for a cat, a dog or a rodent, the ideal is to not choosing a newborn. Baby animals have, in fact, a long life expectancy and require much more attention than an already adult animal. It is therefore advisable to choose a shelter animal with an advanced age and having already received all the learning allowing him to be as independent as possible. The main thing is that the animal does not represent an additional burden for the elderly person, but indeed a beneficial element in their life.


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