Dog ownership can benefit retired seniors’ lives in many ways. The loveable pet can lower stress levels, speed up recovery after an illness, and even help owners keep their cholesterol and blood pressure levels in check.
What’s more, canines can provide seniors with much companionship and purpose. An owner will wake up each morning with the aim of feeding, walking, and playing with their pooch.
However, if you have never owned a dog before, you mustn’t rush into ownership. Here are four considerations to make before welcoming a dog into your home during retirement.
- The Best Dog Breed
Different dog breeds have varying temperaments, behaviors, and exercise requirements. Seniors should avoid welcoming a large, active pet into their home, as they might struggle to control the canine as they grow older.
Small dog breeds are often the best choice, as they are lighter and tend to have less energy than bigger canines. Of course, some small dog breeds can become frustrated if they don’t receive enough walks each day, which is why you must research your desired dog breed before bringing one home.
Great dog breed choices for seniors include:
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Shih Tzu
It is crucial to take your affordability into account before getting a dog. Every nickel and dime in your bank will determine your financial security and comfort during your senior years. Breeds of every size can cost much money, as you will need to pay for:
- Veterinary care
- Dog food
Of course, there are ways you can reduce the cost of dog ownership, as you could make your own toys, groom your pet at home, and browse the market for affordable dog beds and accessories. Also, veterinary care doesn’t need to eat into your retirement savings, as you can find affordable services from an emergency vet Naples Fl, or at a destination near you. Plus, you can lower essential vet services with value-for-money wellness plans.
- Your Retirement Lifestyle
Consider your retirement lifestyle before committing to dog ownership. While you might dream of enjoying relaxing strolls in a park or along the beach with a pooch, you must ensure you can be by their side daily.
Dogs will depend on you for food, grooming, exercise, play, and companionship. If you’re planning to travel the world during retirement or spend your spare time volunteering or visiting loved ones, your lifestyle might not suit dog ownership. Canines require and deserve much attention each day, and they might struggle with loneliness or behavioral problems when neglected.
- Your Health
If you have never owned a dog or spent much time in a canine’s company, you might have an allergy to their fur. You are more likely to have a dog allergy if you have:
Before bringing home a dog, try to spend time in a friend’s house who has a dog to test if you have an allergy.