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The Health Benefits of Owning a Dog in Later Life

The world-famous dog show, Crufts returned on March 8th with a wonderfully varied array of man's (and woman’s) best friends on display. Among the agility runs, perfectly pampered poodles and adoring fans, we decided to take a look at some of the benefits that canine company can bring you during your retirement years.

Active lifestyle

When it comes to physical well-being, there’s often nothing better than getting out in the fresh air and going for a good walk. Taking your dog for a walk provides the perfect reason to do this and research undertaken by the University of East Anglia (UEA) has found that dog-walking is one of the best ways to stop a sedentary later lifestyle. 

Healthy heart

As well as those daily walks, it turns out that our furry friends can also help maintain a healthy heart. Scientists recently discovered that stroking a dog (or a cat) releases the hormone oxytocin which lowers blood pressure, in fact, just staring into those puppy dog eyes can have the same effect. 

Mental health

Inspired Villages are built with sociability at their core as we know that keeping an active social life in later life is key to great health, well-being, and enjoyment. Despite the community spirit, dogs can help combat loneliness and depression in the elderly. By always being there as a companion by your side, you can guarantee that you’ll never feel alone when you have a dog in the home. 

Socialising

Continuing with the theme of a community, there’s no greater community than those who take pride in caring for their pets – Crufts is a perfect example of this! When you’re out walking with your dog, there’s a good chance that you will bump into other dog owners, creating the perfect opportunity for a regular catch-up or maybe making new acquaintances. This secondary benefit of walking your pet can enhance those mental health benefits and potentially help forge brand new friendships. 

So if you have a trusty pet beside you while you’re reading this, you can be safe in the knowledge that they are helping you live a healthier life. If not, then it might be worth exploring the possibility of bringing a dog into your life, and here at Inspired Villages, we offer a range of pet-friendly apartments and options. To discuss bringing your dog to our retirement village why not get in touch today: https://www.inspiredvillages.co.uk/contact 

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