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Senior’s Best Friend: Top Dog Breeds For Older Adults

Older couple with their dog.

The truth is, the best type of dogs for seniors depends on the temperament of the dog and the senior and of course the physical and mental condition of both as well.

What is the best dogs for seniors to adopt? – There are many different types of dogs, purebreds and mixed breeds (mutts).  No one type is suitable for every person so choose one (or two) that can fit into your lifestyle and that you can take care of properly.

Dogs can make great companions for seniors, especially if they live alone.

Having to take your dog out for daily walks enforces exercise, socialization and just getting out into the fresh air which are all very good physically and mentally for many seniors.

At one point in my life I had 3 dogs, all of them mutts that I rescued. One was a poodle mix, the other was a german shephard mix and my 3rd was just a mish-mash of many breeds. I loved them all!

Whether you choose a younger dog or senior pets to live with you during your golden years – I know that if you love dogs, then you will be grateful for their companionship.

What to Consider When Getting a Dog

Most senior citizens who have a dog have almost always have had one in their lives and they know the kind of wonderful companionship and love that they can get from these great pets.

There’s a wonderful story about how a woman gifted her 86-year-old father, who had cognitive impairment, a pet dog to combat his loneliness.

The heartwarming bond they formed showcased the transformative power of companionship for seniors.

But, being older (I’m talking about the person here) means that there are probably some physical and/or cognitive limitations that weren’t there 20, 30 or even 10 years ago. 

These limitations help to dictate the type of dog that would be best for you at this time.

So, if you are considering getting a dog and you are in your senior years, I recommend that you review the following information before you go to the animal shelter to select your furry friend.

Size of the Dog

If you have downsized from your home to a smaller place, it may not be suitable to adopt an Akita or Boxer or any other large dog.

Small dogs may be better suited for small apartments.

Also, depending on your strength and balance (many seniors have balance issues) – a larger sized dog may pull and tug during walks causing you to fall.

You also want to think about bathing your dog.

Unless you are going to take your dog to the doggy salon for their weekly bath, think about how (and if) you will be able to bathe a large dog vs. a smaller one.

The Dog’s Age

Just about everyone can fall in love with a puppy. But caring for puppies can be extremely exhausting.

Not only are they generally very energetic and require a lot of attention, they also need to be house trained and oftentimes require some behavioral training as well.

If these factors are difficult for you then consider an older dog.

Dog shelters are filled with senior dogs (dogs who are 7 years or older) who have been abandoned or their owners simply couldn’t care for them any longer.

These are often very well behaved and loving dogs.

The Dog’s Level of Energy

Some types of dogs are much more energetic than others. Pit bulls, Great Danes, Terriers and Dachshunds just to name a few.

And of course, puppies! All of these types of dogs will require a lot of attention and lots of exercise.

If you are unable to provide this for them they could become frustrated and end up with behavioral issues, chewing on furniture, etc.

Amount of Grooming the Dog Requires

Long haired dogs will require more grooming than short haired breeds.

If you are not up to daily brushing or expensive trips to the doggy salon then consider getting a dog that is more of a “get up and go” type.

Some of the breeds that require more grooming include Chow Chow, Siberian Huskies, Cocker Spaniels and Poodles.

The types of dogs that require little grooming are Beagles (although they tend to be highly energetic), Italian Greyhounds and Chihuahuas.

Who Can You Leave Your Dog With?

It’s important for any dog owner (but especially older ones) to consider who will care for their beloved pet(s) if something happens to them?

It’s not easy to think about (for anyone) but it’s necessary and it’s a wonderful thing to do for those that you love (including your dog).

Choosing the Best Dogs for Seniors

Obviously, the best type of dog to get for older adults are ones that are the best fit for their personalities, needs and lifestyle.

There are many lists of “best dog breeds for seniors” that you can find online and each one will be different depending on the perspective of the author who wrote that list.

But, I think that you should create your own list and the best way to do that is to answer some questions and choose the type of dog that fits the profile that the answers of those questions create.

So, let’s get started on that.

The website, Pedigree.com created a wonderful Dog Breed Selector questionnaire. The questions they ask include the following:

  1. What type of home/living space do you have?
  2. How big is your yard?
  3. Where is your home?
  4. Are you able to keep a dog secure?
  5. For how long would your dog be alone each week?
  6. Do elderly or disabled people stay with you?
  7. What is your age group?
  8. What is the age of the youngest child living in or regularly visiting your home?
  9. How active are you?
  10. How energetic should your dog be?
  11. How much daily exercise will you give your dog?
  12. What size dog are you looking for?
  13. How much money are you willing to spend each week to feed your dog?
  14. How long do you want your dog’s coat to be?
  15. How often will your dog be groomed each week?
  16. Do you want a dog that will protect your property?
  17. Have you owned a dog before?

After taking this questionnaire you will be presented with 6 breeds of dogs that are a match to your answers.

You can then click on each breed to get more information about that type of dog.

This can help you to make the best choice for yourself and your new adopted pet.

Note: This questionnaire gives you information on specific breeds.

Remember that there are MANY shelter dogs and mutts who can be a wonderful fit for you.

I personally have been a pet parent to several mutts and when I compare my dogs to friends who have pure breeds, it does seem that my mutts had far fewer (if any) health problems and behavioral problems.

Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Wooten from Greeley, Colorado wrote in PetMD.com that mutt parents will tell you mutts are healthier but breeders will disagree.

She goes on to say…

As far as I can tell, there are no studies that back up either claim, so everything I have to share on this topic is based on 16 years of clinical practice experience. Generally speaking, I think mixed breed dogs (mutts) tend to be healthier and tougher and tend to live longer than many of the purebreds I see in practice. Mutts, in my experience, tend to have lower incidences of inherited disease, such as some cancers, back problems and hip dysplasia.

I also recommend that you consider the size of the dog that you will adopt. Smaller dogs are easier to handle and take care of but they can also be easier to trip over as well.

Larger dogs can make for wonderful guard dogs but they may be difficult to manage on your daily walks and may not be so easy to bathe.

Best Dog Breeds Suited for Older Adults

Below is a list of some of the best purebred dogs that can make for wonderful pets for older people.

Although these breeds are wonderful, please do not discount the wonderful mutts that are found in countless shelters across the world.

Certainly, traits of each of these breeds in your mutt can help to make them an extremely wonderful addition to your home.

Here’s the list of top-rated breeds for senior citizens:

Bichon Frise

Bichon Frise dog.

The Bichon Frise is a suitable dog for seniors due to several reasons:

  1. Size and Weight: Bichon Frises are small dogs, typically weighing between 6.99 to 15 pounds and standing 8.98 to 12 inches tall. This makes them easy to handle and less likely to cause injury or strain due to their size.
  2. Temperament: They are known for their active, affectionate, alert, cheerful, gentle, independent, intelligent, lively, responsive, sensitive, social, and sweet temperament. This makes them great companions for seniors who may appreciate their friendly and gentle nature.
  3. Low Shedding: Bichon Frises have a loosely-curled double-coat that stands up and does not shed much. This makes them hypoallergenic and easier to maintain, which can be beneficial for seniors who may have allergies or difficulty with extensive grooming.
  4. Life Span: Bichon Frises have a long life span of 12 to 20 years, providing long-term companionship for seniors.
  5. Activity Level: While Bichon Frises are active and lively, they do not require as much physical activity as larger or more energetic breeds. This can be a good fit for seniors who may not be able to engage in strenuous physical activity.
  6. Social Nature: Bichon Frises are known to be social and responsive, which can provide emotional support and companionship for seniors, especially those living alone.

Boston Terriers

Boston Terrier dog.

Boston Terriers can be suitable dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Boston Terriers are small to medium-sized dogs, usually weighing between 10 and 25 pounds (4.5 to 11 kg). Their compact size makes them more manageable for seniors, especially those who may have physical limitations or difficulty handling larger dogs.
  2. Exercise needs: While Boston Terriers still require regular exercise, they generally have moderate exercise needs compared to some other breeds. Short walks, playtime, and interactive toys can help meet their exercise requirements. This can be more manageable for seniors who may not have the same level of physical stamina or mobility as younger individuals.
  3. Temperament: Boston Terriers are known for their friendly, affectionate, and gentle nature. They typically have a good temperament and enjoy being around their owners. Their friendly disposition can make them excellent companions for seniors, providing emotional support and reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation.
  4. Low grooming needs: Boston Terriers have a short, smooth coat that requires minimal grooming. They shed minimally and are considered a low-maintenance breed in terms of coat care. This aspect can be beneficial for seniors who may have difficulty with regular grooming or who prefer a dog with less hair to clean up.
  5. Trainability: Boston Terriers are generally intelligent and eager to please, which makes them relatively easy to train. Their willingness to learn and adapt to new commands or routines can make them a suitable choice for seniors who want a dog that is trainable and responsive to their needs.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can be a good dog for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are small to medium-sized dogs, typically weighing between 13 and 18 pounds (6 to 8 kg). Their size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Gentle and Affectionate: Cavaliers are known for their sweet, gentle, and affectionate nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being close to them. Their loving disposition can provide comfort, companionship, and emotional support to seniors, reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation.
  3. Moderate exercise needs: While Cavaliers are energetic dogs, they have moderate exercise needs compared to some other breeds. Regular walks, play sessions, and mental stimulation can help meet their exercise requirements. This level of activity can be more manageable for seniors who may not have the same physical stamina or mobility as younger individuals.
  4. Adaptability: Cavaliers are generally adaptable and can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in smaller living spaces, such as apartments or retirement communities, making them suitable companions for seniors who may have downsized their living arrangements.
  5. Good with other animals: Cavaliers are often sociable and get along well with other pets, including dogs and cats. This characteristic can be beneficial for seniors who already have other animals in their homes or who may want to introduce a new pet into their household.
  6. Companion dogs: Cavaliers were originally bred as companion dogs, and their breed traits still reflect this purpose. They enjoy being with their human family and are known for their lap dog tendencies. This can make them an ideal choice for seniors who want a dog that loves to cuddle, relax, and be close to their side.

Cocker Spaniel

Cocker Spaniel dog.

The Cocker Spaniel can be a good dog for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Cocker Spaniels are medium-sized dogs, typically weighing between 20 and 30 pounds (9 to 14 kg). Their size makes them manageable for seniors who may prefer a dog that is not too large or too small.
  2. Gentle and friendly nature: Cocker Spaniels are generally known for their gentle and friendly temperament. They are often sociable and enjoy being around people. Their affectionate nature can provide companionship and emotional support to seniors, helping reduce feelings of loneliness or isolation.
  3. Moderate exercise needs: While Cocker Spaniels have moderate exercise needs, they do require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. This can involve walks, playtime, or engaging in activities that stimulate both their physical and mental well-being. Seniors who can provide moderate exercise can enjoy the benefits of an active and energetic companion.
  4. Trainability: Cocker Spaniels are known to be intelligent and trainable. They are eager to please and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. Their willingness to learn can make them suitable for seniors who may want a dog that is easy to train and responsive to commands.
  5. Adaptability: Cocker Spaniels are adaptable dogs and can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in various environments, including apartments or homes with small yards. Their adaptability can make them a good choice for seniors who may have specific living arrangements or mobility considerations.
  6. Bonding potential: Cocker Spaniels often form strong bonds with their owners and thrive on human companionship. They enjoy spending time with their families and are often loyal and devoted. This strong bonding potential can be fulfilling for seniors who are looking for a devoted and loving companion.

French Bulldog

French Bulldog dog.

The French Bulldog can be a good dog for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: French Bulldogs are small-sized dogs, typically weighing between 16 and 28 pounds (7 to 13 kg). Their compact size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Low exercise needs: French Bulldogs have relatively low exercise requirements compared to many other breeds. While they still benefit from regular walks and playtime, they do not require extensive exercise or vigorous physical activities. This makes them more manageable for seniors who may have limited mobility or stamina.
  3. Calm and affectionate nature: French Bulldogs are known for their calm, affectionate, and easygoing temperament, which makes them excellent companions for seniors. Their affectionate nature can provide comfort, companionship, and emotional support, which can be particularly beneficial for seniors who may be living alone or experiencing feelings of loneliness.
  4. Adaptability: French Bulldogs are generally adaptable and can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in various environments, including apartments or smaller living spaces. Their adaptability can make them suitable for seniors who may have specific living arrangements or space limitations.
  5. Low grooming needs: French Bulldogs have a short and smooth coat, which requires minimal grooming. They do shed to some extent, but the shedding is generally manageable. This aspect can be beneficial for seniors who may have difficulty with regular grooming or who prefer a dog with less hair to clean up.
  6. Companionship: French Bulldogs are known to be affectionate and enjoy being close to their owners. They often form strong bonds with their human companions and thrive on human interaction. Their loyal and loving nature can provide emotional support and companionship to seniors, helping them feel valued and loved.

Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers dog.

Golden Retrievers can be excellent dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Gentle and friendly temperament: Golden Retrievers are known for their friendly, gentle, and patient nature. They are typically very sociable and enjoy being around people. Their affectionate and tolerant demeanor makes them great companions for seniors, providing comfort and emotional support.
  2. Size: While Golden Retrievers are medium to large-sized dogs, ranging from 55 to 75 pounds (25 to 34 kg) in weight, their size can still be manageable for many seniors. They are sturdy but not overwhelmingly large, making them easier to handle compared to giant breeds.
  3. Trainability: Golden Retrievers are highly intelligent and eager to please, which makes them highly trainable. They are known for their obedience and willingness to learn. This trainability can be beneficial for seniors who may prefer a dog that is responsive to commands and able to learn new skills.
  4. Exercise companionship: Golden Retrievers are active dogs that require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. This can be beneficial for seniors as it encourages them to maintain an active lifestyle. Golden Retrievers make excellent walking or hiking companions, motivating seniors to engage in physical activities and enjoy the outdoors.
  5. Versatility: Golden Retrievers are versatile dogs that can adapt to various living situations. They can be comfortable in different environments, including apartments or houses with larger yards. Their adaptability allows them to fit into a senior’s lifestyle, whether they prefer a more relaxed pace or an active routine.
  6. Companionship and loyalty: Golden Retrievers are known for their loyalty and devotion to their owners. They form strong bonds with their families and are often excellent family pets. Their companionship can be particularly valuable for seniors, providing a constant source of love, support, and companionship.

Labrador Retrievers

Labrador Retrievers dog.

Labrador Retrievers can be great dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Friendly and gentle temperament: Labradors are known for their friendly, outgoing, and gentle nature. They are typically sociable and enjoy being around people, making them excellent companions for seniors. Their affectionate and patient demeanor can provide comfort and emotional support.
  2. Size and physicality: Labrador Retrievers are medium to large-sized dogs, typically weighing between 55 and 80 pounds (25 to 36 kg). While their size may require some physical strength to handle, many seniors can manage their size comfortably. Their sturdy build can provide stability and support, making them suitable for seniors who desire a more substantial dog.
  3. Trainability: Labradors are highly intelligent and eager to please, which makes them highly trainable. They excel in obedience training and can learn a wide range of commands and skills. This trainability can be beneficial for seniors who may prefer a dog that is responsive to commands and able to learn new behaviors.
  4. Exercise companionship: Labradors are energetic dogs with a high need for exercise. They require regular physical activity to keep them mentally and physically stimulated. This can be an advantage for seniors who want a dog that motivates them to stay active and encourages them to engage in daily exercise routines such as walking or playing fetch.
  5. Versatility: Labradors are versatile dogs that can adapt to various living situations. They can be comfortable in different environments, including apartments or houses with larger yards. Their adaptability allows them to fit into a senior’s lifestyle, whether they prefer a more relaxed pace or an active routine.
  6. Companionship and loyalty: Labradors are known for their loyalty and devotion to their owners. They form strong bonds with their families and are often regarded as excellent family pets. Their companionship can be particularly valuable for seniors, providing a constant source of love, support, and companionship.

I had a sweet Lab several years ago and she would have made a wonderful companion for anyone.

However, in my personal experience, Labs are pretty large, so you would need to be sure you could handle a dog that might weigh 75 pounds (she pulled me off my feet once when she took off after a rabbit!).

If you enjoy larger dogs, I can highly recommend this breed.

Maltese

Maltese dog.

The Maltese can be a good dog for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Maltese dogs are small-sized, typically weighing between 4 and 7 pounds (1.8 to 3.2 kg). Their small size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Low exercise needs: Maltese dogs have relatively low exercise requirements. While they still benefit from daily walks and playtime, they do not require extensive physical activity. This makes them suitable for seniors who may have limited mobility or prefer a less active lifestyle.
  3. Affectionate and loyal: Maltese dogs are known for their affectionate and loyal nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being close to them. Their loving and devoted temperament can provide companionship and emotional support to seniors, reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation.
  4. Adaptability: Maltese dogs are generally adaptable and can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in apartments, retirement communities, or homes with small yards. Their adaptability makes them suitable for seniors who may have specific living arrangements or space limitations.
  5. Low shedding: Maltese dogs have a single-layered, silky coat that does not shed excessively. While their coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and keep it in good condition, they are considered a low-shedding breed. This can be beneficial for seniors who may have allergies or prefer a dog with minimal shedding.
  6. Long lifespan: Maltese dogs have a relatively long lifespan compared to some other dog breeds. With proper care and nutrition, they can live up to 12-15 years or even longer. Seniors may find joy in the long-term companionship and the potential for a lasting bond with their Maltese.

Miniature Schnauzers

Miniature Schnauzer dog.

Miniature Schnauzers can be good dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Miniature Schnauzers are small to medium-sized dogs, typically weighing between 11 and 20 pounds (5 to 9 kg). Their size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Low shedding: Miniature Schnauzers have a wiry, double coat that sheds minimally. While their coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and maintain its texture, they are considered a low-shedding breed. This can be beneficial for seniors who may have allergies or prefer a dog with minimal shedding.
  3. Trainability: Miniature Schnauzers are intelligent and highly trainable. They tend to be eager to please and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. Their trainability can be advantageous for seniors who want a dog that is responsive to commands and able to learn new skills.
  4. Alert and protective: Miniature Schnauzers are naturally alert and can be good watchdogs. They have a tendency to be aware of their surroundings and will often bark to alert their owners of potential intruders or unusual sounds. Their alertness can provide an added sense of security for seniors.
  5. Companionship: Miniature Schnauzers are known for their affectionate and loyal nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being part of the family. Their companionship can provide emotional support and reduce feelings of loneliness or isolation, which can be particularly important for seniors.
  6. Moderate exercise needs: While Miniature Schnauzers have energy and enjoy regular exercise, they generally have moderate exercise needs compared to some other breeds. Daily walks, playtime, and mental stimulation are important for their well-being. This level of activity can be manageable for seniors who may have limited mobility or prefer a more relaxed exercise routine.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

Pembroke Welsh Corgi dog.

Pembroke Welsh Corgis can be good dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Pembroke Welsh Corgis are small to medium-sized dogs, typically weighing between 25 and 30 pounds (11 to 14 kg). Their compact size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Low grooming needs: Pembroke Welsh Corgis have a medium-length double coat that requires regular brushing to maintain its condition. While they do shed, it is not excessive. Their grooming needs are generally manageable, which can be beneficial for seniors who may have difficulty with extensive grooming or prefer a dog with minimal shedding.
  3. Trainability: Pembroke Welsh Corgis are intelligent and trainable. They are quick learners and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. Their trainability can be advantageous for seniors who want a dog that is responsive to commands and able to learn new skills.
  4. Adaptability: Pembroke Welsh Corgis are adaptable dogs that can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in various environments, including apartments or houses with small yards. Their adaptability makes them suitable for seniors who may have specific living arrangements or space limitations.
  5. Affectionate and loyal: Pembroke Welsh Corgis are known for their affectionate and loyal nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being part of the family. Their companionship can provide emotional support, reduce feelings of loneliness, and bring joy to seniors’ lives.
  6. Moderate exercise needs: While Pembroke Welsh Corgis have energy and require regular exercise, they generally have moderate exercise needs. Daily walks, playtime, and mental stimulation are important for their well-being. This level of activity can be manageable for seniors who may have limited mobility or prefer a more relaxed exercise routine.

Poodle

Poodle dog.

Poodles can be good dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Poodles come in different sizes, including Standard, Miniature, and Toy. Seniors can choose a Poodle size that suits their preferences and capabilities. Toy and Miniature Poodles are smaller in size, making them more manageable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle.
  2. Hypoallergenic coat: Poodles have a curly, hypoallergenic coat that sheds minimally. This can be beneficial for seniors who have allergies or prefer a dog with reduced shedding. Poodles’ coats require regular grooming to keep them clean and prevent matting, but their low-shedding nature can be advantageous for seniors with sensitivities.
  3. Trainability: Poodles are highly intelligent and trainable. They are often ranked among the most intelligent dog breeds. Poodles excel in obedience training and can learn a wide range of commands and skills. Their trainability makes them suitable for seniors who want a dog that is responsive to commands and capable of learning new behaviors.
  4. Versatility: Poodles are versatile dogs and excel in various activities. They can be trained for obedience, agility, therapy work, and more. This versatility allows seniors to engage in different activities and enjoy the companionship of a Poodle in a variety of settings.
  5. Companionship: Poodles are known for their affectionate and loyal nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being part of the family. Their companionship can provide emotional support, reduce feelings of loneliness, and bring joy to seniors’ lives.
  6. Moderate exercise needs: While Poodles have energy and require regular exercise, they generally have moderate exercise needs. Daily walks, playtime, and mental stimulation are important for their well-being. This level of activity can be manageable for seniors who may have limited mobility or prefer a more relaxed exercise routine.

Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu dog.

Shih Tzus can be good dogs for seniors for several reasons:

  1. Size: Shih Tzus are small-sized dogs, typically weighing between 9 and 16 pounds (4 to 7 kg). Their compact size makes them suitable for seniors who may prefer a smaller dog that is easier to handle and requires less physical exertion.
  2. Low exercise needs: Shih Tzus have relatively low exercise requirements. While they still benefit from daily walks and playtime, they do not require extensive physical activity. This makes them suitable for seniors who may have limited mobility or prefer a more relaxed lifestyle.
  3. Affectionate and loyal: Shih Tzus are known for their affectionate and loyal nature. They often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy being close to them. Their loving and devoted temperament can provide companionship and emotional support to seniors, reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation.
  4. Low grooming needs: Shih Tzus have a long, luxurious coat that requires regular grooming to keep it in good condition. However, many seniors appreciate the opportunity to engage in grooming activities and bond with their dogs. Shih Tzus are often well-suited for seniors who enjoy the process of grooming and have the time and patience to maintain their coat.
  5. Adaptability: Shih Tzus are generally adaptable and can adjust well to different living situations. They can be comfortable in apartments, retirement communities, or homes with small yards. Their adaptability makes them suitable for seniors who may have specific living arrangements or space limitations.
  6. Companionship: Shih Tzus are known for their companionship and enjoy being with their owners. They are often considered lap dogs and enjoy cuddling and spending time in close proximity to their human companions. Their presence can provide emotional support, reduce stress, and bring joy to seniors’ lives.

You may also want to consider adopting an older dog if you are able to physically and financially take care of him/her.

Oftentimes, these older pets do not get adopted and spend their final years in shelters or homeless.

If you are only interested in a purebred dog then consider looking at the American Kennel Club for more information about each breed.

Should a Senior Citizen Get a Dog?

If the older adult is able to care for (or pay someone to care for) their dog and they have the appropriate type of home and the finances to care for that dog, then the answer is YES!

Because, anyone who has loved a pet of any kind knows the amazing bond that develops between human and animal.

Studies have shown that the bond between people and their pets can increase fitness, lower stress, and bring happiness to their owners. Some of the health benefits of having a pet include: decreased blood pressure, decreased cholesterol and triglyceride levels, decreased feelings of loneliness and increased opportunities for socialization.

PetsForTheElderly.org

One of the main problems that seniors face is loneliness, and pets provide great company.

Their unconditional love and support go a long way. I know for myself, after my husband passed away a few years ago – my pets were a great comfort to me (and still are) during those very lonely nights and mornings.

Read more about The Benefits of Pets For Seniors here.

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