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How Pets Help Your Physical and Mental Wellbeing in Retirement

Did you have a pet when you were young or when your children were young? Maybe you’ve always wanted to get a pet, but you worried that you weren’t going to have enough time. Now is a great time to get an animal companion as you’re settling into an amazing 55+ community just south of Houston in Manvel. Whether you prefer a pet with fur, feathers, or fins, having a pet is fun and can be remarkably good for your physical and mental wellbeing.

What are the Physical Benefits of Pets?

While having a pet certainly can’t replace your medicine, a pet may still provide some physical health benefits. 

  • Lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and heart rates - Interacting with a pet has been shown in many studies to help people have lower blood pressure, heart rates, and cholesterol. 
  • Physical exercise - If you have a pet such as a dog or a cat, if nothing else, they certainly guarantee that you get and want more physical exercise through playing with it or simply taking it for a walk. 
  • Lower stress - Having daily interactions with a pet has been shown in a variety of studies to help lower your daily stress.

Serenity at Meridiana has incredible walking trails that are perfect for walking a dog, and the enthusiasm of a dog tends to encourage its owner to go just a little bit further and walk just a little bit longer.

What is the Mental Health Benefits of Pets?

Along with helping with your physical health, if you’re feeling down, pets really can help lift your spirits. 

  • Decreased loneliness - Daily interaction with pets helps decrease the feeling of being alone, which can help with anxiety and depression. 
  • Less worry - Worry is never going to go away, but pets don’t live with the same type of worry. They focus on the here and now, which can help bring you back to the present. 
  • Reduced stress and anxiety - Even watching a beautiful fish swimming around provides you with something to focus on to help reduce your stress and anxiety.
  • Security - Security isn’t really an issue when you live in a gated community such as Serenity at Meridiana, so you may not need a big security dog. Either way, it helps with your peace of mind.

Again, a pet might not replace your medicine for depression or anxiety, but laughing at some silly antics, cuddling, or just even adoration and affection that pets share often helps reduce the intensity that can come with sadness and other mental health issues. 

How do Pets Provide Routine in Retirement?

As well as benefiting your mental health, simply having a pet helps give you a new purpose. You have a schedule you have to follow that helps get you up and move for these daily duties, including the following:

  • Feeding, 
  • Exercise, 
  • Play, and
  • Grooming. 

You’re less likely to stay inside, becoming a hermit, especially when you have a pet like a dog. One look at your dog’s sweet face when they want to go for a walk, and you’ll have a hard time resisting. Also, dog owners often get to know each other during walks. On the plus side, if your pets get along, you can make new friends as well as new walking partners.

How Pets Help Foster a Sense of Community?

However, pets provide companionship, no matter the type of animal or the size of the animal. Pets become part of your family and are a constant source of entertainment and conversation, whether you live with your partner or you live alone. There are so many animals out there that make great pets, no matter your level of animal experience or the time you have to devote to them. From guinea pigs to Mastiffs, pets enhance your retirement in so many ways. If you want to adjust to the idea, you could even volunteer at your local pet shelter; however, you’ll probably find yourself coming home with a new animal companion!