When an elderly person has contact with a pet, it can significantly alleviate loneliness, depression, and isolation. For individuals who have lost their spouse in death, or whose children have grown and have moved away, a dog can be a perfect source of companionship and friendship. Pets can also help relieve the pressures of people suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia patients usually experience some bouts of agitation, and pets can help them stay calm. Interacting with a pet can also stimulate the appetite of the elderly who might not eat regularly due to health conditions and age.
Also, walking or even playing with a pet is an excellent source of exercise which is in turn beneficial to the elderly people. Playing with a dog may help straighten out arthritic arms and hands. Petting a dog might also help reduce cortisol which is a stress hormone, and in its place, help in boosting the levels of the serotonin which is the happy hormone in the body. Dogs seem to have a predisposition for when frightened or unhappy people need to be consoled and for seniors who are facing fears of perhaps, the future or even surgery, a dog can help the elderly person live at that moment.
Dogs always develop a bond with the elderly person they are caring for and tend to adapt to the needs of the elderly individual. This video depicts an elderly man who is probably an octogenarian and seems sickly as well with his adorable and caring dog who helps him as he tried to cross a small road. The camera captured this unexpected display of affection in its truest form. The dog was probably happy to be going on a trip with his owner and jumped up for joy when they left the house. However, the dog did not run off to play with other dogs or to see a new environment. Even though he was not on a leash, he stayed with the elderly owner even though the man took a long time to walk through the road. Perhaps they were going to the park or just for a stroll.
The dog, however, did not abandon his owner, knowing the condition of the owner that he cannot rush across the road, waited patiently for him. The dog first went ahead of his owner to check if the road was free so he could cross. When he found it was free of traffic, he gave his owner a signal to come over from a short distance in front and kept waiting for his owner to come across. After about three painstaking minutes, his owner crossed and they were back on their journey.