-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
They not only help increase an elderly person’s life span but they also help to recover from injuries and illnesses faster. Research shows that people with pets are less stressed and don’t visit the doctor as often as those without pets do.
This can be because of the fact that just petting a dog or a cat, releases endorphins which have a calm, soothing effect.
Having a pet to care for can also motivate you to exercise and take care of yourself, especially since your pet is counting on you. Senior citizens tend to skimp out on exercising, but a pet needs some fresh air and to go for a walk. Therefore, having a pet can increase the likelihood of you exercising.
The special friendship that comes with having a pet is also beneficial to a senior citizen’s health. Many people are lonely in their old age, with no family or friends, that having a pet reduces those feelings of loneliness.