Is it a Good Idea for Elderly Adults to Adopt a Cat
— August 29th, 2018
Owning a pet cat can really benefit elderly adults, both physically and emotionally.
If seniors are feeling a little lonely or need some extra incentive to get more active, a cat may be the answer that family caregivers are looking for. As long as the elderly adult can take care of most of the cat’s needs on their own and they are not allergic, there’s no reason why an aging adult couldn’t benefit from adding a cat into their lives. With the support of family caregivers and elderly care providers, the elderly person can rescue a cat and bring home a loving companion.
Benefits of Cat Ownership
Studies show that owning a cat is very beneficial to a person’s health. Physically, cat owners are more active and experience less stress. Petting and cuddling a cat can reduce blood pressure, alleviate stress and reduce the risk of loneliness. Cat caregiving requires some physical activity, from providing food and water to actively playing.
Seniors with cats are less likely to develop anxiety and depression, and report having a greater sense of purpose in life than aging adults who don’t own a pet. Because many elderly people grow increasingly dependent on family caregivers and elderly care providers, they may start to feel worthless, useless and unimportant. However, having a cat to care for boosts their self-esteem and makes them feel needed. There’s no better reason to get a cat for an aging adult than it makes them happier and healthier.
How to Find the Right Cats for Seniors
Seniors and family caregivers should consider adopting an adult cat from their local shelter. While the cute kittens may seem like the obvious choice, the adult cats are a better fit for seniors. Kittens are extremely active and not litter box trained. They can cause damage to the home and their personalities are thus far unknown. Adopting an adult cat means that they are calmer and more trusting of new people. Adult cats from a shelter are often already spayed or neutered and are just looking for a new home and someone to love.
An adult cat is usually a better personality fit for an aging adult. Because they are more mature, adult cats are usually very content to sit close to their owner and snooze for hours. However, they also like active play ad seniors can do so with ribbon, feathered wands and other cat toys. Adult cats are also more open to new people, such as family members and elderly care providers. All in all, it makes sense to rescue an adult cat from a shelter, as it could also save the animal’s life.
If family caregivers are wondering if it is a good idea for an elderly adult to adopt a cat, the answer is yes. Cats are excellent companions for seniors and provide a lot of benefits for those who are lonely, disabled and elderly. With lots of unconditional love to give, a cat is sure to make even the most reluctant senior smile.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Homecare in Mississauga, please contact the caring staff at Geri Health Home Care today. Call us at 416-431-6266. Serving Greater Toronto Area, Markham, Richmond Hill and Vaughan.