Getting a dog has improved my life so much and I would have to say yes to the question, Do Dogs Help Loneliness?
Getting old is something that we all want to happen to ourselves as it shows that you are having a long life.
We also want that to be a life where we feel as well as possible and can still be active and have interests.
Sadly, this isn’t always the case for us as, along the way, life happens and things can go wrong and we can lose loved ones, companions, and partners.
Increasingly in both the UK and the US, studies are showing that more and more people are spending more time alone as they get older.
A staggering 50 hours a week alone is what some over 55s are experiencing and this can have a serious effect on a person’s mind and wellbeing.
It’s not just older people that are being affected by this and older and middle-aged people are spending on average 19 hours a week alone and without any human contact, you can see that this is a worrying trend.
Adopting A Dog Can Be The Answer
Adopting a dog can be a way for people who are suffering from loneliness to be able to get back outside and experience the world and what it has to offer.
Loneliness can be caused by many factors as we have already stated, but another cause can be empty nest syndrome that can happen to both mums and dads when their children have grown up and left home.
Not having the same routines to do can make people less inclined to do things and this is when loneliness can start to kick in and you experience withdrawal from possibly once a more active lifestyle.
Many people who have been asked about why they got a dog possibly for the first time later in life have remarked that it was because they felt lonely and needed to have a reason to go out again.
Many have said that getting a dog has made them exercise regularly as well.
One of the most interesting factors that many of the over 55s have said is that getting a dog, has reduced their stress levels and this can only have a good effect on your health, the long term.
Reducing stress, anxiety, and levels of depression is one of the wonderful side effects of having a dog. Dogs don’t judge us and they are constant too.
They are always pleased to see you and most importantly, they love being with you and as pack animals, they are sociable and this is good for us as humans to be sociable too.
Trustworthiness and Loyalty are two elements that humans hold as important in pretty much all aspects of their lives and dogs hold these two principles in abundance.
Older dogs that can be found in rescue centers have nearly always ridden themselves of their puppy ways and this is why they make such great companions for people who are finding themselves feeling low.
With tens of thousands of dogs being dumped or put up for adoption/rehoming every year globally, it is hoped that highlighting the benefits of having a dog will give people an insight to some of the benefits that the dog will actually bring to them.
Instead of thinking about getting a puppy that can require a huge amount of work in terms of training, it is hoped that people can think about taking on an older dog that can be the perfect companion for a person.
Older dogs are generally settled in terms of temperament and more often than not, house trained too.
Rehoming an adult dog can be extremely gratifying while providing a second chance to a deserving pet to become part of a loving household.
Owning an older dog can introduce a new dynamic to your life too and can cause a change of pace and this can often be a huge positive.