Animals hold a big place in our hearts. Whether it is the classic dog, a feline friend, a budgerigar or even a fluffy bunny, domestic pets are a staple for many Aussies. According to the RSPCA, approximately 62% of Australian households are pet owners. Pet adoption numbers have also risen drastically, as a result of more time spent at home during lockdown and working remotely. It is also a common fact that pets have been found to increase an owner’s sense of wellbeing, mood and communication. With these benefits, not to mention the companionship, seniors are often encouraged to look into pet adoption.
Purpose: having the responsibility to take care and show love to a pet often brings meaning to people’s lives.
Companionship: arguably the best aspect of having a pet is the bond you are able to create. Domestic animals often become treasured family members to pet owners, especially those who are often on their own or who have lost a partner.
Sociable Nature: in the case of having a dog, owners need to take their pet to the park and go for walks or can bring along their furry friend when visiting friends or neighbours. These daily occurrences bring forward opportunities to socialise and keep active.
COMMUNITY AGED CARE PROGRAM
The RSPCA NSW’s Aged Care Program ensures both the pet and senior owner have the resources and assistance to look after their bundle of furry joy in their own home for as long as possible. Assistance is available to elderly pet owners over the age of 65 and palliative care patients of any age. Some of the services include assistance with veterinary treatment, pet grooming, transport to and from the local veterinarian and volunteer dog walking.
HOW TO ADOPT
For seniors whose health is declining, older pets can still be adopted at the RSPCA, with no adoption fee for cats and dogs aged over 10. Adoption at RSPCA shelters is ideal, because not only are you rescuing an animal in need of a good home, but you can rest assure that the adoption assistants can help prospective owners choose the right pet for them.