By Kimberly Martinez
What should you pay attention to when choosing a companion for your golden years? It pretty much comes down to three basic things:
2. Energy level, and
3. Health and temperate history
Throughout centuries “man’s best friend” has been reserved as a title for canine companions. But as time progresses and we start to age, the demands of caring for “man’s best friend” can be too much for certain people.
Should that mean that we give up on dogs completely? No. It means it’s time to find a dog which suits your current lifestyle.
Size means a lot because there will be times you have to physically deal with your dog. From your everyday walk to giving him the affection he needs, physically dealing with a heavier dog may become progressively more difficult. Because of this, size is something you should consider. If you’re living with someone, bigger may be manageable, but if you are alone a smaller dog is probably best.
Now, some people automatically assume that if you get a smaller dog it will be less work, but guess what? That’s definitely not true. Most of my life I have had smaller dogs and for the most part, they were easy to handle until my Jack Russell, little “Geronimo.” And let me tell you, his energy is through the roof. I constantly have to be checking on him and making sure he is letting out his stored energy safely, which isn’t always easy. He is living proof that smaller doesn’t mean easier. But if you think you can deal with high energy no matter what then don’t be afraid. You know yourself and what you will be capable of handling.
Lastly, and maybe most importantly, is your dog’s health and temperate history. Most people hitting their senior years are on a fixed income while some are living off of their retirement. Why does this matter? Because some dogs are prone to diseases which means having to pay vet bills. If you are low on money, this will eventually put you between a rock and a hard place.
When deciding on a dog, make sure you ask about prior health history, along with health concerns about that specific breed. One suggestion that may help you is to get a dog who is already an adult. This will help you determine health history along with temper. Temper will become especially important, especially if you have younger kids around.
By Angela Clark, RN
How important is socialization as we age? Have you ever thought about this question or what does it really mean?
Researchers found that seniors in the U.S who have an active social life may have a slower rate of memory loss.
No one wants to spend most of their days at home alone with a television or having limited interactions with others. Isolation and loneliness is becoming an increasing problem in our busy, fast paced world.
BE SELF AWARE
Pay attention to your daily schedule or that of the loved one you care for. Focus on the type of activities that actually fills the day, and with whom? Many studies are showing that isolation and a lack of socialization can lead to memory issues as well as depression for seniors.