Do Seniors Have to Give Up Their Pets at Assisted Living?

Pets: Assisted Living Spanish Fort, AL

Pets: Assisted Living Spanish Fort, AL

Millions of Americans have pets. In the grand scheme of history, this is a relatively newer phenomenon as people thousands of years ago were more concerned with finding enough food for themselves and their families and had no interest in keeping pets. With all the luxuries of modern life, we have a tendency to spend an incredible amount of time, money, and energy devoted to our four-legged friends and for seniors who may be facing increased challenges in the years ahead, they worry about what might happen if they need to rely on elder care.

There are many different forms of elder care, with assisted living being one of the best. It is one of the best because it allows aging men and women to maintain independence while being surrounded by experienced staff members able to assist at any given time.

Will Assisted Living Care For Pets?

It depends on the facility. It also depends on the type of elder care the aging senior chooses. There are different types of elder care, and even though some of them may allow seniors to remain home, that doesn’t mean they would be able to keep their pets.

Some assisted living facilities do not allow pets. Some do. If the elderly person is adamant about being able to keep their beloved pet with them, they need to speak to an administrator at a local facility directly. Find out what kind of provisions are available, what kind of pets may or may not be allowed, and what the senior has to be responsible for when they move in.

Does Assisted Living Staff Take Care of Pets?

That’s not likely. Staff are there to support seniors, not to be dog walkers, clean up after cats, or take care of other animals. Most assisted living facilities that do allow pets (not all of them do) will only allow a select few types and with specific requirements that must be met in order for them to stay.

Can It Benefits Seniors To Keep Their Pets?

It absolutely can be. Studies have shown that pets help to lower blood pressure, provide comfort, and stave off loneliness for elderly men and women, especially when they have difficulty visiting with friends or participating in various activities.

What you need to keep in mind, though, is that being responsible for a pet — whether it’s a cat, dog, or something else — is a tremendous responsibility. It is not going to fall to the hands of staff members or administrators to look after this animal or animals.

At some point in time, the aging senior may not be able to properly care for this pet and, at that point, he or she may need to look at other options. The best thing you can do is figure out what’s best for the animal as well as the senior and find the right common ground and the perfect assisted living community for them both.

If you or an aging loved one are considering a move to Assisted Living in Spanish Fort, AL, contact Ashbury Manor Specialty Care and Assisted Living at 251-317-3017.

About Cindy Johnson

Ashbury Manor’s Administrator since 2008, Cindy Johnson is a long-time expert in the assisted living field. Prior to her arrival at Ashbury Manor, Cindy managed acquisitions and crisis management for existing and new larger senior care project developments for eleven years. As regional manager for an Oregon-based assisted living management company, Cindy was directly responsible for operations for five 50-65 bed assisted living facilities. As manager during the transition to new ownership, Cindy reorganized internal operations and conducted leadership training for Executive Directors. As a result of her management and expertise, one of the company’s facilities (in Ocala, Florida) received a deficiency-free survey, resulting in the lifting of a moratorium on operation.

A nurse for 36 years, senior care has always been Cindy’s passion. Desiring to work more closely with residents, Cindy became a Category II Administrator in 2005. As Ashbury Manor’s Administrator, Cindy understands the complexities associated with dementia and cognitive impairment and she has fallen in love with seniors with dementia or cognitive impairment and their families.

Cindy is Treasurer of the local “Senior Coalition” chapter. She enjoys mentoring new candidates who want to become administrators.

As a 16-bed facility, with Cindy's training and experience, our residents and their families can be sure Ashbury Manor’s carefully selected staff provides the expertise of a larger facility while maintaining the individualized personal care of a small special needs home.
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