“Pet-Friendly” Assisted Living

This second article by Cherie Henry and Diane Delaney, Advisors for Golden Placement Services, provides “food for thought” with respect to the importance pets can have in the lives of seniors.  If you need to find a living location (“pet-friendly” or not) for your aging parent or other senior, contact Golden Placement Services to find out how they can help you.  My appreciation to Cherie and Diane for their willingness to provide the following article:

“Those of us who own pets know how much they mean and how happy they make us. An ever growing body of scientific research confirms our pets can aid in relaxation, lower blood pressure, promote health, and prolong life, making it all the more emotionally difficult to discuss moving to a senior care community without our furry loved one.  According to a study in the ‘International Journal of Aging and Human Development,’ many elderly Americans think having a pet is more important than moving to a convenient place to live where pets aren’t allowed.  The good news is that the perception that Senior Living Communities do not allow pets, is a misconception.  Many Senior Living Communities are “Pet Friendly”.

Animal programs in senior care communities consistently demonstrate an increase in self-care, activity, mobility and a lifting of spirits. When given a pet to play with, depressed patients who were reluctant to work to regain lost skills resulting from a stroke, began to smile and work together with their therapists. Many with Alzheimer’s disease may experience loneliness and emotional isolation; but having a pet around, who is eager to please no matter what the person’s state, can reduce discouragement or sad feelings.

We recognize pets are psychologically important.  They can stimulate socialization by providing a topic of conversation with others where stories of happy moments with pets are shared. Every pet owner, as with parents, loves, loves, loves to talk about them.  Even if you aren’t a current pet owner, you might be pleasantly surprised to find a community or home that has a “community pet” for everyone, including the employees, to benefit from by having a loving, four legged friend nearby.

You can get assistance with helping you find a ‘pet-friendly’ care community which also includes a review of the guidelines and limitations about having a furry companion as a roommate or housemate. We have found that in many circumstances, a pet can help our loved ones adapt to life-changing circumstances such as adjusting to new living arrangements.

Cherie Henry, Advisor  Diane Delaney, Advisor  http://www.goldenplacements.com/         503-723-7145

“Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects” Arnold Glasow