There are numerous benefits of owning a dog as a senior. The most obvious are health benefits. Dogs will keep you fit and active even at older age. You must take them on daily walks no matter what, which will improve your physical condition.
There are other health benefits as well. There are studies, that suggest, that owning a dog can lower the blood pressure, lower blood sugar, it contributes for better cardiovascular functioning and it can lower cholesterol.
Dog ownership is also associated with reducing stress, loneliness or anxiety. Many people at older age are lonely, it is sad truth. With dogs, you will always have a friend by your side and you will meet other people on your walks. With a dog, you will always have a topic to discuss with other dog lovers.
Sometimes it is hard to organize your life in the retirement. Dogs will also help you with that, they will give you a routine, which can be very beneficial for many people. You will have to feed them, walk them and nurture them on daily basis.
Not only that this gives you a routine, it will also make you feel needed. In the adulthood you had job and kids who needed you. Very often you do not have it in retirement, but having a dog will give you this important feeling.
Dogs are also amazing emotional support animals. Many dogs are very empathetic and they feel when you are sad or unhappy and they share these emotions with you.
Dogs, especially medium or large sized dogs, provide security as well. Not many people will try to rob you or harm you when they will see a dog by your side.
Dogs can also improve your memory. There are studies suggesting that owning a dog can improve memory recall, memory retention, and improve mental cognition in the owner.
Of course, even though there are many many benefits of owning a dog at older age, i would not recommend it to everyone.
You should be ready for a long commitment. Sometimes it is better to adopt adult dog from shelter that is already trained and socialized rather than young untrained puppy. Living with an energetic puppy can be little bit too much for a senior.
Ask yourself if you are healthy enough to really have a dog. Are you ready for at least several walks a day? Do you have any disabilities or limited mobility? If so, i would recommend you other pet than a dog, which can also have extremely good benefits on your life.
Do you have the finances to own a dog? Dogs are not only time commitment but financial commitment as well. You must pay for food, grooming, toys and medical care. Dogs can be quite expensive to own, so think about that as well!
But if you have enough finances and you are in okay physical condition to own a dog, i would go for it! It will definitely make your life better!