The greatest most undeniable truth of life is mortality. Everyone dies. Growing old is a part of this journey that everyone undertakes. Growing old comes with a reduction in worldly responsibilities and duties. But sadly, it also comes with its fair share of problems. More often than not one’s health starts to deteriorate. The recovery rate is much lower than what one is used to. Repercussions of our youth’s ill- fated decisions begin to show. Along with that comes the onset of isolation. One begins to feel segregated from the rest of the world. One cannot seem to relate with so many aspects of life. Sometimes one’s own family is unable to spare sufficient time for us, and there’s that can be done. In some cases, the health of our friends or our own comes in the way of regular meet and greet. This situation is far worse, in case of disability. Disability in terms of physical health or mental both are equally heartbreaking.
A pet animal is the single most effective way to combat loneliness and provide actual and virtual relief to the elderly and disabled. Your friends and family may not be around at all times, but a pet will always be by your side no matter what. And this holds equally true for any pet that one chooses. Pets seem to have a special bond with them. They can be truly understanding and extremely lovable. Animals are such adorable friends. They ask no questions and pass no criticism.
In certain cases, the elderly lose track of what has been said, and tend to keep repeating things. Other people around may not be comfortable in dealing with such instances and may lash out, making the person in question feel even more unwanted. Pets on the other hand give a patient ear for everything that one has to say and respond sincerely. They make up for any absence in the person’s life and make them feel wanted, to reinstate their feeling of significance in someone’s life.
Spending time with a pet for an elderly person is good for their morale, uplifting their spirits and feeling of self-worth. Any act of love or kindness is received with utmost gratification. Pets treat their owners like they are the only thing that matter. They are the single most important person for a pet. A pet feels like it is their job to ensure the well-being of the owner, whether it is physical or emotional.
A pet at home is like a guarantee for the other members of the family for the safety and comfort of the elderly or disabled member of the family. They know that the pet will ensure that the person does not feel lonely or insecure in the absence of other family members. There are instances when the person and the pet are so close, that the relevance or value of presence of any other family member is significantly reduced.
Communication between the two becomes a regular feature in their daily schedules. The person talks chats with the pet, even though it may not understand exactly what is being said. But sometimes just listening intently is all that they need. In other cases the conversations are wordless, yet the pet understands if the person needs it to react or just reach out with a nuzzle and a soft sound. Pets that may usually be considered loud, are sensitive around the elderly and disabled. A pet can recognize that it needs to be calm peaceful and quite when dealing with them.
Pets are especially adept at providing emotional support and physical comfort to them. Just stroking and gently petting your pet acts like an anti-depressant. It soothes the nerves and calms your mind. No actual conversation is required, and this time will be deemed as time well spent. Engaging in any kind of physical activity seems cumbersome if one is forced to do it. But when there is a pet for company, the elderly and disabled are encouraged to do what is necessary. Walking the dog or playing with the cat seems harmless while at the same time provide sufficient physical exercise for them and cheers them up.
Pets can be trained to act as passive companions. Such as a seeing dog is an immense asset for blind people. It is no wonder that hospitals and geriatric centers are increasingly adopting pets as an additional effort to aid in health care. Cats are known to be a proficient support system when a patient’s health is fast deteriorating. They can sometimes tell when he is about to pass away. Just watching a pet and spending time with them a stress reliever. Pets give love much more than what they receive without any expectations or falsifications. This true nature of a pet is a gentle reminder to the owner that they are loved and cared for. Scientific studies around d world continue to prove the value of a pet in one’s life. In addition to which, the faith and loyalty of a pet towards the owner even after their death has often been immortalized in literature and in movies.