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Best Pets for Seniors

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A senior woman sitting on a couch with a dog beside her.

As we get older, it’s natural for our lifestyle to change. We often find ourselves with much more free time than when we were younger now that we no longer have so many daily obligations. We can find new hobbies or pursue our interests, but it’s also common to develop feelings of isolation or loneliness as we age. When the desire for daily companionship becomes stronger, pets become a great idea!

There are many different pets that provide companionship for seniors. Dogs, cats, fish, and birds are common choices that all have their own positive impact on your life. Pets and seniors make a great combination, and companionship is never a bad thing!

What are the Best Pets for Seniors?

When it comes to picking a pet, it’s important that it suits your lifestyle. Having an animal companion around to provide you with love and affection can make a large difference in your quality of life. 


When it comes to getting a pet, a dog is one of the first things people think of. They’re loyal, they’re loving, and each one has their own personality. They also require regular exercise and walks, so they’re an excellent motivator to get out and about and keep moving!

Smaller breeds, like the Shih Tzu or the miniature poodle, can be a good option for a person living in a senior community. Due to their size, they’re easier to lift, bathe, and control, making them a popular choice for seniors. They also require less exercise than a larger breed and less food as well! 

They’re also much more suitable for smaller living spaces since they don’t need so much room to run around, and they take up much less space in the home than most dogs!


Cats are a popular choice of pet for a senior who wants low-maintenance companionship. They’re excellent for providing emotional support, and they don’t require the same level of exercise as a dog, making them a good option for seniors with limited mobility. 

They’ve also been known to help reduce levels of stress and blood pressure and provide benefits to your psychological health! Curling up with a nice book and a purring cat on your lap sounds like an excellent way to spend an evening.


For a senior wanting a low-maintenance pet, birds may be a good choice. They don’t require exercise like dogs do, they don’t require bathing, and the cages are easy to clean! 

They also tend to have extremely long lifespans, sometimes living for several decades. This source of steady companionship can help add a sense of predictability to a person’s day. 

They’re also known to be exceptionally smart, being able to learn several tricks or games, and some are even known to sing their own melodies. Watching a bird learn and explore its environment can provide intellectual stimulation!


Fish are one of the most low-maintenance pets there are. With all sorts of beautiful colors, they can be soothing to simply watch and appreciate. A small aquarium can be an excellent addition to any living space and requires very little maintenance other than feeding and cleaning!

A senior man playing with a dog at a park with other seniors eating.

What are the Benefits of Pets for Seniors?

Pets can provide many different benefits for seniors, like:

  • Companionship and reducing feelings of loneliness or isolation
  • Reducing stress and helping a person feel calm
  • Increasing physical activity for their owner, as many pets require walking or exercise
  • Improving mood, as having an animal around to give love and support can help a person feel like they have a bigger sense of purpose

Companionship in Older Age

Pets can be an excellent option for any person struggling with feelings of loneliness or isolation. Whether a dog or a cat, a fish or a bird, having a companion constantly around can help a person feel much happier and more fulfilled. 

At the end of the day, determining what animal is right for you or your loved one is based on your lifestyle and preferences. 

In addition to the benefits of a pet, senior communities can be an excellent choice for seniors wanting to socialize and connect with the people around them. Many of these communities offer pet-friendly accommodations and activities, making it easy for a senior to keep their beloved companion around. If you or a loved one are in need of a senior community that prioritizes a high quality of life, schedule a tour with us here at Eagle Point Senior Living!

Written by Lifespark

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