Pets are very therapeutic for seniors, especially those who are alone. Professional caregivers that work with seniors daily, state that pets bring seniors out of isolation, provide mild cardiac activity when walking or grooming the pet, and have a sense of being needed and valued. Seniors with dementia, specifically those who develop Alzheimer’s “Sundowners Syndrome” a condition where they become confused and disoriented after dusk, become calmer and develop a strong connection with a pet.
Pets have shown to improve appetite, increase social interaction, and create tactile activity for all seniors. If you want more information about pet therapy for a senior, talk to a doctor, physical therapist, or social worker in your area about the opportunities available for you.