Studies find that dogs do have a positive impact on health.
The simple act of petting a dog can lower blood pressure and pulse. Pets provide companionship, which is vital for anyone. Owning a dog requires you to walk it each day, so you get exercise. It helps people get out of the house and be social within a park, neighborhood, or trail system.
Pet ownership isn’t something to take lightly. Families need to discuss the impact a pet will have before bringing home a new pet. Talk about these three points first.
Is There Enough Money to Pay for a Pet?
Pets cost money. Food, toys, treats, vaccinations, grooming, and emergency care add up. A CNBC report found that cat owners pay an average of $26,400 during the cat’s life. A dog costs an average of $34,800. Most pets live longer than 10 years, so you’re looking at around $2,000 or $3,000 a year for cats and dogs. Can your parents afford that?
Can They Handle the Necessary Training?
Dogs and cats both need the training to be good pets. Dogs need to be housebroken, socialized and taught basic obedience. Cats need to be taught where to go to the bathroom, not to scratch carpets, furniture, and wood trim. Your parents need to be able to consistently reinforce these lessons and rules.
What Happens to the Pet if Your Parents Are Unable to Care for It?
Here’s something that people don’t put a lot of thought into. If your parents reach a point that they are unable to care for the pet, what happens to that pet? Most seniors automatically assume another family member will rehome the pet, that isn’t always feasible.
Your parents may think you’ll take their dog, but will your cats or dogs enjoy having a new sibling? Will that dog fit into your household? If their dog is aggressive with your cats, you put your cats at risk. If the dog isn’t housebroken, you might find yourself having to spend hours, days, and weeks cleaning up and training the dog to follow your rules.
You might have to rehome the family pet, and some areas have limited shelter space and rescues. You may not be able to rely on help rehoming the pet. You’re at risk of having to research potential homes to make sure they’re going to be responsible pet owners.
Companionship services from an elder care agency may be the better option. Caregivers provide the companionship your parents need by stopping by each week or day. Call an elder care agency to talk about companionship services and other ways caregivers can help your parents.
If you or an aging loved one is considering hiring Elder Care in Anderson, OH, please contact the caring staff at Queen City Elder Care today. Serving Cincinnati and Surrounding Communities. Call Us Today (513) 510-4410.
Michele Vollmer is a visionary leader who is perpetually searching for ways to improve, so to remain at the leading edge of the home care industry.She has served in the healthcare industry since 1989, including pharmaceutical and home health sales, as well as hospice sales and sales management.