Most humans have or have had a pet at one point that they truly bonded with and loved dearly. There is a comforting feeling of being a pet owner and the animals can provide companionship that is truly valuable and beneficial to a person’s life and overall well-being. This is even more true for senior citizens and elderly people. According to the New York Times, around 41 percent of seniors aged 65 and older actually own a pet in their household. While the benefits of pet therapy and pet ownership for seniors are plentiful, the actual logistics of caring for said animal can be tricky as people age.
We have previously discussed the important role pets play on seniors on our blog, but this month we are excited to feature a charity that is dedicated to that very cause. Pet Peace of Mind’s mission is to “enrich the quality of life and well-being of hospice and palliative care patients by providing a national support network to help care for the pets they love.” The organization is committed to keeping pets and people together through life’s transitions. Their vision is to have a nation where all patients are provided the support needed to maintain the loving bond they have with their pets.
Pet Peace of Mind was originally founded by a group of professionals working in the field of human health care, medical research, academia, palliative care, veterinary medicine, business, and non-profit organizations. The board of directors who founded the organization recognized the growing research that proves the emotional and health benefits of the human-pet bond. This bond is even stronger among senior citizens and older Americans. The leaders of Pet Peace of Mind hope to fill a void in the nonprofit sector dedicated to helping hospice and palliative care patients care for their pets.
Often times, pets are treated and loved as family members and provide comfort to their owners just like a close friend or relative could. Pet Peace of Mind realized this close bond and just how important it is, particularly in one of life’s most challenging stages. The end-of-life journey is no easy time period for anyone and having a pet to provide support, security, and even safety at times for seniors can be very beneficial. In these instances where a senior has a pet, it takes on a deeper meaning. The pet may serve as their own source of companionship, comfort, and love. The pet may even give them a reason to get up every day.
Unfortunately as seniors age and illnesses often progress and worsen, they will need assistance not only caring for themselves, but for their pets as well. While some seniors have a vast support network of close family or friends, many seniors do not have that luxury. Their families may be located further away geographically or unable to offer help for other reasons. Beloved pets are often overlooked or seen as an afterthought by family members and friends who are caring for the senior owner. Pet Peace of Mind is the solution to this situation.
The Pet Peace of Mind program assists local nonprofit hospice and palliative care organizations and groups serve their patients as well as their patients’ pets. By providing education to hospice and palliative care organizations about the importance of pets in the lives of their patients, caregivers are able to support the pets in practical ways. The turnkey approach of our program helps those organizations then train their volunteers to help patients with pet care needs.
For more information about the Pet Peace of Mind organization and mission, visit their website. If having reliable, dependable care for yourself or a senior loved one is something you need, please call 916-933-9777 or visit our website. Our professionals are more than happy to serve those in need of caregiving assistance in Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer, and Yolo counties. For daily tips, advice, and news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Plus.