Pet Therapy For Seniors: How Caregivers Make Implementation Easy


Pet Therapy For Seniors: How Caregivers Make Implementation Easy

Today’s post reviews research on the benefits of pet therapy for seniors in home care settings, then highlights how our caregivers make implementation easy.

Read on to learn more, or call (608)-315-2378 to speak directly with a caregiver coordinator in Madison, WI.

Research Review: The Healing Power Of Pet Therapy In Madison, WI

While most people view pet ownership as an arrangement where we take care of our pets, a large and growing body of research suggests that they’re caring for us, too.

In a recent meta-analysis of published research on the effects of Human-Animal Interactions (HAI), Gee et al. (2017) found:

  • Senior pet owners exhibit greater fall-resistance. Slip-and-fall injuries are a leading cause of hospitalization, loss of mobility, and death for Madison seniors, and Wisconsin’s fatal fall rate is far above the national average. If you’re looking for ways to reduce your loved one’s fall risk, research suggests that pet ownership is an effective intervention. Pet owners are typically more active than non-owners, and this helps them maintain strength, balance, and cardiovascular health. While tangled leashes and overexcited pets can be a fall hazard, surveyed pet owners were substantially less likely to fall than non-owners, and when they did, their recovery times were much faster (Gee et al., 2017).
  • Pet therapy fights anxiety and depression. Multiple studies showed how regular HAIs can reduce anxiety and depression in the general population, but “these effects are particularly apparent with populations in elder-care institutions and assisted-living facilities” (Gee et al., 2017, p. 1417).
  • Pet companions ward away loneliness and isolation. According to the National Institute on Aging, isolation is “the new smoking” for seniors, with the health risks of prolonged loneliness now equated to smoking 15 cigarettes a day. If your loved ones live by themselves and report feelings of loneliness, pet ownership or structured HAIs can be very beneficial. Across multiple studies, HAI has been shown to reduce loneliness and mitigate the negative health effects of isolation, while also improving mood, quality of life, and frequency of social interactions with others, as seniors end up chatting at the dog park or seeing neighbors while out walking their pets.

If you’re interested in harnessing the power of pet therapy for your loved ones, our caregivers can help!

Easily Implement Pet Therapy With Caregivers In Madison, WI

These are just a few of the ways we help seniors reap the rewards of pet therapy without any of the risks:

  • Caregivers connect seniors with Madison’s pet therapy resources—Not looking to bring a pet into the home full-time? Not a problem. Madison residents are blessed with a number of great pet therapy programs, including Dogs on Call and WAGS, Inc, and our caregivers can help your loved ones get started with these therapeutic visits.
  • Caregivers provide assistance with pet care—If you’d like to reap the health benefits of pet ownership without burdening your loved one with a furry dependent, our caregivers can help. Leave the walks, feeding, kitty litter changes, accident clean-up, supply purchases, and veterinarian visits up to us.
  • Caregivers keep the home care environment clean—Pet dander, accidents, and enthusiastic play can make quite a mess in the home, and if that mess is neglected, it can greatly reduce indoor air quality. But with our caregivers by your side, you’ll never have to worry.
  • Caregivers can coordinate “pet therapy” outings—Whether your loved one wants to visit a local petting zoo or see a family member with a dog or cat, our caregivers can facilitate these outings, providing good company, reliable transportation, COVID-19 protection, and full support with activities of daily living.

Book A Free Consultation With Pet-friendly Caregivers In Madison, WI

To learn more about how our caregivers simplify pet ownership and coordinate structured HAIs for seniors in home care settings, and get a free quote on any custom care plan, call (608)-315-2378 or fill out our online contact form.

References

Gee, N. R., Mueller, M. K., & Curl, A. L. (2017). Human-Animal Interaction and Older Adults: An Overview. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 1416.

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