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Things to keep in mind when choosing a dog for a lonely senior

Many might not know this, but a furry friend such as a dog is just the thing that any senior could benefit from. Dogs have shown to reduce anxiety, depression, and overall loneliness in seniors. Additionally, dogs also provide seniors with a sense of calm knowing that they are protected by their loyal friend. Choosing a dog is a fun and exciting process however the needs and wants of the future owner should be taken into account. For instance if the senior likes peace and quiet, they probably should not adopt a hyper 4-month old pomeranian. Some things that should be considered when choosing a dog are…

1. Age

Age is very important when selecting a pooch. This is because the younger the dog, the more hyper and immature they are. A puppy will require more care as they tend to be more energetic, need to be trained, and played with frequently. Older dogs may be better candidates for seniors as they are housebroken, know what is “bad behavior” and “good behavior”, and generally require less around-the-clock care. Seniors should adopt dogs aged 7 and up as those are considered seniors, anything below that age will still be a fairly young dog.

2. Energy Level

A dog’s energy level ties into their age, but also depends on their breed. For instance, some breeds require significantly more exercise than others such as rat terriers. Some seniors might be fairly active, going on frequent walks and taking classes such as yoga. These type of seniors are better suited taking care of dogs that require more exercise. However if a senior has mobility issues, adopting a more dormant breed is the way to go.

3. Size of the Dog

The size of a dog should also be considered. If a senior lives in a small apartment or care facility, choosing a smaller dog might be better than a big labrador retriever. Additionally, many older seniors might prefer a small dog as it can sit in their lap and can be taken with them to the majority of places. A larger dog breed requires more space and usually a big backyard to run in. However, some seniors prefer bigger dogs as they tend to bark less and make them feel safe. The guidelines of the place of residence should always be regarded pertaining to the size and breed of dog. Some apartments or facilities do not allow dogs of certain breeds and sizes.

4. Breed

There are many breeds of dogs out there, it can often become overwhelming choosing a furry friend for a senior. Some breeds may be more suitable for seniors because of their traits and size. One great dog breed for instance is a poodle. They are highly intelligent, gentle, and form strong bonds with members of their family. Further, they require daily walks but enjoy sitting on their owner’s lap or being carried around. Another great companion is a boston terrier. Being
easy-to-train and keeping barking to a minimum are some of their great qualities. Like poodles, these terriers also enjoy sitting on their owners lap and cuddling.