At long last, this chilly month of May is starting to warm up, there’s heat in the sun and that cold wind seems to have died down. There were some days recently where there seemed to be four seasons in each day – each one with only a mere glimpse of what summer might look like.
As the evening lengthen more and we get closer to the longest day of the year, it’s lovely to get out and about in the evenings. It is all too easy to sit inside and watch our favourite soap opera but the evening time can be the nicest time of the day. If you have a pet that needs a stroll, you have absolutely no excuse to not go out for a walk.
Here’s some considerations for owning a pet:
- Get a pet that suits your energy levels and mobility. Some dogs such as Labradors are hugely energetic and require a lot of walking. A smaller dog, such as a poodle, will be easier to keep in the home as well as being more manageable in terms of exercise. Jack Russells are small but tend to need a lot of exercise as they are high energy. Cats tend to be more independent and will come and go in and out of the cat flap when they please. If you feel you need a reason to get out for a walk, a small dog could be the better option.
- Get a pet that will ‘talk to you’. I don’t necessarily mean a talking parrot but some pets are more responsive than others. Cats will lie on your lap and purr contentedly, dogs will respond with bright eyes and wagging tails, budgies might even learn to respond with actual words. A pet can provide great company and yes, you can definitely feel that they are fully engaged in the conversation.
- Consider care for your pet when you are away on holidays. More and more accommodation providers are providing facilities for pets which is extremely useful if you don’t want to put your dog or cat into kennels or if you don’t have anyone nearby to pop in to feed the fish. The other option is to hire a company like Pet Sitters Ireland who will come to your home to exercise and feed your pet while you are away.
- Consider the age of your pet as appropriate for your needs. A puppy or kitten will need a lot of attention, from toilet training to frequent feeding to having to watch everything you put down in case it chews it. An elderly pet may require a lot of extra care. Sourcing a pet from a rescue centre means that not only are you giving an animal a much needed home but the staff will help you choose a pet that is most suitable to your needs.
- Consider their temperament too – a kind, mellow pet is ideal. You probably don’t want one that might snap at visitors or bark loudly. Remember a mellow pet has a really calming influence too – perfect for helping you to feel secure and safe.
- Consider the costs too. Pets can be expensive and pet insurance may be a good idea in case they ever need expensive treatment. In any case, even just pet food and vaccinations are going to incur expense.
Don’t let these considerations put you off if you are thinking of getting a pet but do use them to choose the right animal for you and your situation. Pets can help to lower stress, prevent depression, lower blood pressure as well as increasing social interaction and physical activity.
Do you have a pet? What, in your opinion, is the best pet for an elderly person?