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Many seniors have that feeling of an empty nest once their family starts their own life journeys. They can get sad and lonely, considering the house that was once full, now stands empty. A great solution to beat this feeling is getting a pet. The benefits of owning a pet are unbelievable.

Pets are especially beneficial to people that are 50 and older. Owning a dog requires regular walks, which is a great way to stay in shape. When walking a dog, most people don’t see it as an exercise. However, it is one of the best types of exercise for people that are in the mentioned age group. A more active senior is a healthier senior.

Besides the obvious ‘activity benefit’, pets come with other benefits as well. If walking a pet on a regular basis isn’t a possibility, the sole ‘owning of the pet’ will make a big difference. Numerous studies show that pet owners have higher levels of anti-stress hormone Oxytocin. That means lower blood pressure in response to stress for pet owners, which is a great health benefit.

Caring about an animal comes with mental health benefits as well. Keeping track of their eating schedule, taking them out, making sure they are taken care of altogether. Being accountable for an animal will keep their mind occupied and make them feel useful and good about themselves.

There are even events such as group dog walks which is a great way for seniors to socialize with others, keeping them connected to their community.

People with pets are proven to live longer. Pets make us feel happier, connected, they teach us responsibility, they keep us active. Some care facilities even introduced pet therapy into their program, bringing trained animals to the residents.

Having a pet comes with responsibility, and responsibility can be a great thing. Especially for the seniors. So think about it- getting a pet would not only mean getting a loving companion but great health benefits as well.