Clare Oaks Blog
Posted: Monday, May 8, 2017
By: Clare Connection
There is an anonymous quote that states that dogs have owners and cats have staff. What a great picture that paints, evoking images of a dog jumping around the kitchen, tail wagging fast as a propeller as someone opens the dog food can and holds off the beast who can't wait for the food to drop into the bowl. And the cat, snidely waits for the slow staff member to fumble with her food. Animals are fun. They are a joy. They are also very therapeutic.
Yes pets are a lot of work. They need the same things we need: food, water, exercise, and companionship. These are the same things that make having a pet beneficial. Pets help keep you active. They are social magnets. They reduce stress and make you healthier. These are solutions to some of the most common afflictions that can plague some seniors: lack of activity, social isolation, and stress and depression. This is why pets are used in therapy, and volunteers are encouraged to bring their pets to hospitals and rehabilitation centers.
In his Woof Blog, The Pet Care Guy says that pets are fun to watch, fun to play with, fun to read their expressions, and that they get into funny situations. Maybe that is why having a pet can lower blood pressure. That's right, a study published in the journal, Hypertension, showed that pet ownership lowers blood pressure response to mental stress. Another study showed that having a pet can increase coronary artery disease survival. Research has also shown that petting a dog releases serotonin, prolactin, and oxytocin, hormones that make you feel good.
If you decide that pet ownership is a smart idea for you, then choose a pet that will work for you. You will improve the therapeutic affect of owning a pet if you choose an animal that you have always had an affinity toward. That may sound like stating the obvious, but people may feel that if they live in a tighter home than what they did years ago, they may opt for a small dog. But if you love Labradors, then only a Labrador will give you the optimal enjoyment, not a Chihuahua. If you are not a dog person, then get a cat. Cats will curl up in your lap, follow you around the house, and purr. A cat's purr is therapeutic too. Animal Wellness magazine suggests that the vibrations of a cat's purr has healing benefits, citing that cats rarely have bone or joint-related diseases, respiratory problems are rare, and purring relieves pain and heals tendons and muscles. Did you ever wonder why cats curl up next to their owner? Some believe that they can feel when their owner isn't well. Comfort and healing may be a cat phenomenon.
Choose the pet that will best fit your lifestyle. Pets do give seniors a sense of purpose. But make sure that the maintenance level of your pet suits the amount of care you are willing and able to give. Cats don't require a lot of care or activity and can live anywhere. If you are a dog person Clare Oaks Senior Living is a wonderful spot for retirement living. Clare Oaks is nestled on 41 acres of picturesque grounds with pathways, grass, and rolling woodlands, a great place for walking a dog. Riley’s Run is a great place for your dog to run and meet other furry friends. This is run by the Bartlett Park District
If you would like more information about this charming, pet-friendly retirement community, please call us at 630-372-1946.