Thousands of senior citizens find themselves alone when their families grow up and begin lives all their own. One way these senior empty nesters can enjoy some companionship is to get a dog. Choosing a dog, does however, have its disadvantages. Dogs need to be trained and they do require some exercise. Both necessary requirements can prove to be a challenge for an elderly person to manage. Luckily, for them, there are senior dogs that are a much better suited for a senior companion, and many senior dogs are in need of rescue. A canine senior citizen could provide an un-demanding friend for the human senior citizen.
Senior dogs have lower energy levels than younger dogs. Older dogs will not require walking nearly as much. Senior dogs are usually housebroken by the time they are available for adoption, so the senior dog owner will not have to clean up the messes they would with a much younger dog. They will need to be fed and perhaps bathed and brushed, but that is a small price to pay for the friendship that they provide.
The later years in a person’s life can easily be the hardest. Many senior citizens are looking for a purpose. Some have no family, and no one with which to socialize. When a senior buys a senior dog, they will enjoy a companion that is in need of a loving home. The owner gets a friend and a purpose. The dog gets a friend and a home. Studies have shown that elderly people with a dog have more exercise and more interactions with people than those without a canine companion.
Negative Reasons to Consider
There are a few negatives with buying older dogs however. Besides the obvious fact that they will not live as long, many senior dogs have medical problems that can be expensive. Older dogs can have many of the same problems as older people such as hearing and vision loss, and arthritis. In addition, if the dog dies before the person, it can be absolutely devastating for the owner. The dog might be the only thing the owner was attached to, his only friend. The loss of a dog could make the owner even lonelier than he was when he got them.
Nonetheless, it is better to have loved and loss than to never have loved at all. Being a dog owner is a very fulfilling experience and the pros greatly outweigh the cons. Older owners are better for old dogs because they will share their lives while letting them enjoy their own pace. They will not insist on a game of chase, or fetch. Both parties will be perfectly content to take it easy and live at a slower pace.
A senior citizen cannot buy a person to spend time with them, but they can buy the next best thing, a dog. A canine senior will provide an elderly person all the benefits of dog ownership but in a more relaxed way.
Being a veterinarian and invisible dog fence specialist is her career, freelance writing is her hobby. Advice and information by Susan Wright, can be found covering many topics including dog based, scientific research.