- best dogs for seniors
Dog breeds suitable for older people

Best dogs for seniors

Best dogs for seniors Best dogs for seniors with allergies

Perfect small companion dog for older people

Best dog breeds for seniors with allergies

Low energy dog breeds for seniors

Best apartement dogs for senior citizens

Lap dog breeds for a senior owner

Best dog breeds for active seniors

Low energy lap dog for a senior owner

Companion dog breeds for older people

Best small dog breeds for seniors

When choosing a dog breed for seniors, it's important to consider breeds that have characteristics that align well with the lifestyle and needs of older individuals. Here are some characteristics to look for in dog breeds that are suitable for seniors:

Size: Smaller or medium-sized breeds are often more manageable for seniors, as they are easier to handle, require less physical effort, and are more suitable for apartment living.

Temperament: Breeds with a calm, gentle, and affectionate temperament tend to be good choices for seniors. Dogs that are eager to bond, provide companionship, and enjoy snuggling are ideal.

Low Energy Level: Breeds with lower energy levels and moderate exercise requirements are well-suited for seniors. Dogs that enjoy leisurely walks, short play sessions, and lounging are a good fit.

Trainability: Breeds that are easy to train and have a good disposition for learning commands and routines can make interactions enjoyable and help seniors feel in control.

Adaptability: Dogs that can adapt well to changes in routine or living situations are beneficial for seniors who may have varying levels of activity.

Low Grooming Needs: Breeds with short coats or minimal shedding are easier to groom and maintain, which is important for seniors who may have limitations in grooming tasks.

Health Considerations: Opt for breeds that have a relatively low incidence of hereditary health issues. Seniors may prefer breeds with fewer potential medical problems to manage.

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Affectionate and Social: Dogs that enjoy human interaction, get along with other pets, and are friendly toward strangers can provide companionship and a sense of connection.

Low Barking Tendency: Breeds that are not excessively vocal are more suitable for living situations where noise may be a concern.

Age Consideration: Adopting an older dog from a shelter or rescue organization can be an excellent choice for seniors, as senior dogs often have lower energy levels and can offer companionship without the demands of a puppy.

Support Dogs: Some seniors may benefit from service dogs or emotional support dogs that are trained to assist with specific tasks or provide comfort.

Examples of dog breeds that often align well with the needs of seniors include:
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Bichon Frise
  • Pug
  • French Bulldog
  • Maltese
  • Shih Tzu
  • Chihuahua
  • Pomeranian
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Boston Terrier
Keep in mind that individual dogs within a breed can have variations in temperament and behavior. It's essential to spend time with a dog before adopting to ensure that their personality and needs match your own. Additionally, adopting a dog from a shelter or rescue organization can be a rewarding choice and provide a loving home to a dog in need.

Best dogs for senior citizens include small companion breeds with manageable grooming needs. Lap dog breeds such as Papillon or Chihuahua are very suitable for older pet owners because a small dog is easier to walk and to care for. Miniature breeds do not have too much strength to pull on the leash, and are more appropriate for older people with balance issues. Older dog owners may find that walking a large or medium sized dog breed can be difficult due to excessive pulling, while small dog breeds usually do not have the strength to affect the balance of the older person even when the dog is pulling on the leash. Another reason why lap dogs are more manageable for seniors is because a small dog can be easily carried when needed. Older people may appreciate the fact that a smaller dog's financial expenses are usually lower when compared to a larger breed. Smaller breeds require less food on a daily basis and can be easier to travel with for senior pet owners. Smaller dogs are easier to clean up after, which is another plus for seniors. Small companion dog breeds provide the same amount of love and affection to their senior owners, just in a smaller package. Another reason why smaller dogs are best for seniors is because they often have lower energy level and don't require hours of exercise daily, unlike larger and more energetic dog breeds. Seniors with allergies can select from hypoallergenic dog breeds that do not produce as much dander and other allergens compared to other breeds that may trigger asthma attacks or pet allergies in older dog owners. Veterinary bills are typically higher for larger breeds and seniors with smaller dogs may appreciate the lower vet bills associated with smaller dog breeds.

Not only do dogs bring so much joy to people of all ages, including older adults, but dogs also can help seniors to stay healthy. Having a dog requires daily walks and walking helps people to stay active and socially connected. According to a recent study published in the BMC Public Health Journal, older adults with dogs get about 22 minutes of exercise more than seniors who do not own a dog. Walking a dog is a wonderful way to stay active and to lose any extra weight for seniors as more calories are burned while an older person is walking.

Like with dogs, there are certain dog breeds which are best suited for seniors. It is recommended to choose a low-maintenance dog, which does not require a lot of exercise. However, in choosing a particular breed, it is important to consider the owner's lifestyle and current capabilities. Seniors should be able to take care after their dog, including when it comes to health care, grooming, and exercise.

Bichon Frise is a good choice, as these dogs are affectionate and make up for excellent companions. They are also easy to train and do not require a lot of physical activity to be happy. Another great choice is the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, a breed who is known for being affectionate and adaptable. The French Bulldog is a cheerful dog, who requires moderate daily exercise but loves to be active. Maltese dogs love spending time with their owners and prefer shorter walks. Pembroke Welsh Corgi dogs are great companions and can be easily trained. Other recommended breeds include: Pomeranian, Poodle, Shih Tzu, West Highland White Terrier, and Pug.

Assistance from pet-related agencies

You might not be aware of this, but pet-related agencies might be able to cover some of the pet-ownership costs. Some of these organizations provide free cat food to seniors living in assisted living communities. Others offer free or discounted sterilization, financial aid to cover medical care, low-cost vaccination, and flea control products. You can research the different agencies available in your state.

When it comes to choosing the right dog, you might have to consider several aspects. Once you have decided on the breed, you might want to take a moment and consider his/her personality and needs. Do you want a snuggly dog, which is also low maintenance? Or do you prefer a dog who is more active? No matter the answer, you should be certain that the dog matches your energy level. Remember that pups are more active, while mature dogs might have set habits. Additional aspects to consider include: size, pet care budget (grooming, pet supplies, vet visits), special products (pre-programmed food dispenser, LED leash), etc. All these aspects might be discussed with the pet care coordinator.

Dogs are intuitive creatures, knowing to adjust their behavior to their owner. Sometimes, they will be playful, improving one's mood in an instant. Other times, they will just sit by their owners, helping them feel calm. Their mere presence can elevate serotonin and dopamine levels, as studies have shown. Dogs are smart enough to do all sorts of gestures and tricks, so that their owner interacts with them. Even something as simple as fetch can motivate a senior to get off the couch and become more active. From a different perspective, playing with a dog can increase muscle strength, coordination, and balance.

Best dogs for seniors with allergies include breeds with minimal shedding. Although no dog breed is completely allergen free, some breeds produce less allergens such as dander. A senior who has asthma or pet allergies should spend some time with the dog before committing to getting the dog as a pet. This way the older person with allergies can make sure that the dog's presence does not aggravate his or her allergies. Here is a list of dogs that have low shedding and are hypoallergenic. Older people with allergies have many options when it comes to pet allergy friendly dog breeds.

List of dogs to consider for seniors with allergies

Poodles are intelligent and fun and can make a great dog for a senior owner. Poodles are hypoallergenic but can be high maintenance as the dog's coat requires daily grooming and monthly haircuts. Seniors who like to groom a dog should consider this breed.

Yorkshire Terrier
Yorkies are popular pets for seniors who live in apartments. Yorkshire Terriers are conveniently sized and are easy to pick up and carry around even for an older owner. Yorkies produce less allergens than many other breeds and make a good choice for people with pet allergies. Always spend some time with the dog before making a commitment to make sure that your allergies aren't aggravated around the new friend.

Shih Tzu
Friendly Shih Tzus are perfect companion dogs for older people who don't mind the high grooming needs of the breed.

Bichon Frise
Bichon Frise are great dogs for seniors with allergies. The cheerful small breed has extensive grooming requirements and can be expensive to maintain, unless the owner likes to groom the dog at home. Be prepared to work extra hard on house training a Bichon Frise as the breed can be challenging when it comes to housetraining.

Basenji dogs make good pets for older people who enjoy a company of a clever dog. Short coat makes this breed easy to groom.

Hypoallergenic breeds such as the Maltese produce less allergens and make a good choice for older people prone to pet allergies.

Afghan Hound
A large and hypoallergenic dog such as the Afghan Hound is a good option for an active senior that has a large backyard where the energetic dog can run around.

There are numerous benefits of owning a dog for seniors, including a more fulfilling social life. It is easier to make friends when you own a dog. Seniors walking their dogs get approached more often and dog owners are often perceived as friendly by strangers. Seniors often have more time to allocate to grooming and caring for their dog. Dogs with high maintenance coat can rely on their elderly owners to take good care of them. It is a proven fact that dogs have a therapeutic effect on their senior owners and petting a dog can lower blood pressure. Most importantly, dogs provide companionship and the unconditional love to their elderly owners. Older adults with dogs are less susceptible to depression and feelings of loneliness. Having an animal companion is a great way to bring more joy and positive emotions into everyday life. Senior citizens with dogs have a pet to care for every day. Adopting even a small dog is a serious commitment as the dog needs to be fed, walked, played with, cared for and loved every single day for many years to come. That is why only the person who will be the dog's caretaker should be the one to make the decision to adopt a dog. Presenting a senior citizen with a dog is not a good idea as not all seniors have the energy or desire to take care of a pet for many years and a dog should never be a burden to the owner. An older person should be the one to make the decision to become a pet owner.

Older adults have several decisions to make before deciding on which dog fits into their lifestyle in the best possible way. Consider your living situation. For seniors who live in an apartment, there are apartment-friendly dog breeds that will be more suitable for living in an apartment. Dog breeds that do not bark much, calm dogs and lazy dogs that don't need much daily exercise are appropriate for living in an apartment with a senior owner. Senior citizens who live in a home with a fenced yard can consider a wider array of dog breeds. Having a yard for the dog to run around makes it possible to consider more active breeds as it is easier to meet the dog's daily exercise requirements with a larger space for the dog to enjoy. Letting the dog run free and explore the fenced yard is a good way to provide the pet with daily exercise and some mental stimulation at the same time.

Once the decision to get a dog is made, a senior citizen needs to decide whether to get a young puppy or an adult dog. Young puppies are adorable, but puppies require a lot of work every day and senior dog owners may be overwhelmed with the abundance of puppy energy. A puppy needs to be potty trained, socialized, taught good manners and there will be veterinary expenses as every puppy needs certain shots. Puppies are a lot more energetic and are prone to destructive behaviors such as chewing or destroying furniture when there is not enough exercise during the day to keep the puppy busy. Senior citizens or physically challenged adults may not have the energy, physical ability, or desire to keep up with a younger puppy. Older people may find that older pet is an excellent choice for them. There's a good chance that an older dog is already housetrained and neutered. Older dogs are more laid back and have lower exercise needs than young pups with endless energy. If you are worried that an older dog will not bond with you as well as a younger puppy would - that is simply not the case. An older dog that got adopted will appreciate all the love and care that he receives and within a few weeks his heart will belong to you.

Should an older person get a puppy or an adult dog? That depends on the level of energy of the senior citizen. Seniors who have the energy and time necessary to take care of a young, energetic puppy, have the patience to housetrain, socialize and provide basic training to a puppy and are okay with having some things at home chewed by a teething pup, then getting a puppy will only add more joy and excitement to the everyday life. Some seniors choose to get an older dog, who is already housetrained, passed the teething stage and knows basic commands. The older dog may not be as active as a younger puppy and can be a calm companion that an older pet owner can cuddle with and care for. Some people worry that bonding with an older dog may be more challenging, but this is simply not the case. Older dogs may take more time getting used to a new family situation, but they can develop a strong connection and bond with their new owner just as much as any puppy, even though it may take a few weeks initially for the dog to adjust and get to know the new owner.

Retirees who don't mind spending a considerable time every day grooming their dog may enjoy dog breeds with extensive grooming needs. Daily dog grooming may include coat brushing. Monthly trimmings may be required for some breeds. Seniors who are getting a dog breed that has maximum grooming needs need to consider their financial situation because professional grooming appointments can be expensive. Many seniors opt to take care of all the dog grooming needs at home by learning how to give their pet a haircut. Grooming a dog can be a very relaxing experience for both, the older owner and for the dog. Fluffy dogs and dogs with luxurious coat such as Shih Tzu, Poodles, Cocker Spaniels or Bichon Frise will keep an older person busy taking care of the four legged best friend. A senior citizen may even find a new hobby by learning how to give the dog any haircut and have fun in the process.

Consider the size of the dog that you envision for yourself. Small lap dogs are great for seniors who live in either an apartment or a house. Miniature dogs are easier to carry as they are lighter in weight and an elderly owner can easily lift the dog up when needed. Small lap dogs such as the Chihuahua or Yorkshire Terrier make great pet companions for elderly as many lap dogs were specifically bred to be good companion dogs.

Calm medium sized dogs can also be suitable for older couples or elderly single people. Not all medium sized breeds are easy to handle. Aim to select a dog that you are physically able to control. Some medium sized dogs can be challenging to walk as they pull the owner in different directions and may not be appropriate for a senior person who is looking for a peaceful walk with their pet. Older medium sized dogs that are already housetrained and know basic commands will be easier to handle for a senior.

Seniors who are interested in getting a large dog need to be aware of the dog's energy level. There are calm and low energy large dogs that may be suitable for active seniors. Many big dogs need plenty of space to run around and may not be suitable for apartments. An owner of a large breed needs to have the physical strength to control the large animal as some dogs may be more energetic and less obedient and may not be suitable for a senior.

Good apartment dog breeds list

For retirees suffering from asthma or pet allergies, dog breeds such as the Poodle, Bichon Frise, the Maltese or Yorkie may be the best breeds to consider. These dog breeds do not produce as much allergens as other breeds. Keep in mind that no dog breed is completely allergen free. Always test your allergy around the dog that you are planning to get by spending some time with the animal before making the final decision to be sure that your asthma or allergies aren't getting triggered by the dog.

Dog breeds for people with allergies
Best dogs for seniors

Best dogs for seniors include Poodles

Why Poodles are best dogs for seniors? Best dogs for seniors such as Poodles come in three different sizes - toy Poodle, small Poodle and standard Poodle, with standard Poodle being the biggest of the three varieties. Seniors living in an apartment may find that a toy or a small Poodle make good apartment pets. Poodles are hypoallergenic and are suitable dogs for seniors suffering from pet allergies or asthma. Before you commit to getting a Poodle, spend some time with the dog to be confident that your allergies are not aggravated by the breed. No dog is completely allergen free, but some breeds, such as the Poodle produce less allergens than most other dog breeds. Poodle's coat is high maintenance and will require daily brushing and trimming once every 6 weeks to keep the coat neat. Only consider this breed if you enjoy spending time on grooming a dog, because the luxurious coat requires daily maintenance and grooming. Seniors who are looking for a dog breed that is easily trainable may consider getting a Poodle or even a Poodle mix. Poodles are very intelligent and easy to train. These clever dogs make loyal and fun companions for their senior owners.

Owning a Poodle pros and cons
Best dogs for retirees

Pug is a suitable dog for elderly

Best small dogs for seniors include Pugs. Why Pugs are so popular among older dog owners? Pugs can live in an apartment or in a house and they make entertaining companions for older people. Pugs have reasonable exercise requirements and can be happy with two or three walks with the older owner every day. Though Pugs have short coat, they do shed a lot, which is a disadvantage to owning this breed. An older owner will need to brush the dog daily to remove the dead hairs. Pug owners say that a life without a Pug is senseless and you may be repeating that phrase after you fall in love with your own Pug. Pug mixes often inherit the calm and sociable temperament of their Pug parent and make great pet companions for older adults.

Pug care and shedding management
Great dogs for elderly people

Yorkshire Terriers (Yorkies) make great companions for seniors

Yorkies are so popular among the elderly people for many reasons. Small, but full of personality Yorkies are among the best dogs for senior citizens. These lap dogs need a lot of attention from the owner and older pet owners enjoy showering the dog with plenty of attention. Some older Yorkie owners describe their dogs as little shadows that follow them from room to room. A Yorkie wants to be a part of everything that a senior owner does. Another positive about the Yorkshire Terrier breed is that Yorkies don't shed. Their coat still needs to be brushed daily to prevent mats and tangles from forming. Yorkies make a good companion pet choice for seniors with allergies. Yorkshire Terriers are hypoallergenic dogs that produce less allergens than most other dog breeds, which is great for older people who are suffering from allergies. Before you get the dog, test your allergies around Yorkie to make sure that your allergies are not aggravated by this breed. No dog breed is completely allergen free, but some breeds, such are Yorkies, are more allergy friendly than others. Yorkies do need daily walks to meet their exercise requirements. Older people also tend to appreciate the small size of this special dog breed. Conveniently sized Yorkies are among the smallest dogs that are light enough to pick up and carry even for elderly Yorkie breed owners.

Owning a Yorkshire Terrier pros and cons
Good dogs for elderly people

Best dogs for retirees

Why French Bulldogs are good pets for senior citizens? French Bulldogs are calm and don't need much daily exercise besides a few daily walks. There are many more reasons why these small dogs make great companions for seniors. Frenchies can happily live in an apartment or in a house. Frenchies are usually quiet and do not bark much. They are compact in size and do not need much coat maintenance - daily brushings help to keep shedding to a minimum. Older French Bulldogs tend to be even more relaxed than more active puppies. Seniors looking for a laid back companion dog, can find an ideal companion pet in a French Bulldog.

Owning a French Bulldog pros and cons
Great dogs for senior citizens

Best dog breeds for seniors

Another great breed for an older adult is the Chihuahua. Why Chihuahuas make wonderful animal companions to retirees? Chihuahuas are small in size but their personalities really make up for their small size. Chihuahuas are great for elderly as they enjoy being in the center of attention. These small dogs are among the healthiest breeds. Short haired Chihuahuas require minimal grooming. Chihuahuas can meet their exercise needs with a few daily walks and some indoor playtime. With the right care your Chihuahua can live a long and happy life with an older owner. Chihuahuas are the champions among dogs when it comes to longevity and can live up to 16 years of age or even longer, which is another pro to owning this tiny dog with a big heart. The small dog can give a senior owner the unconditional love and companionship that will enrich an older person's life in so many ways.

Owning a Chihuahua pros and cons
Best dogs for the elderly

Best dogs for seniors

Older adults who are looking to get a smart dog breed that they can teach some tricks can find the perfect dog in a Papillon breed. Why Papillons make great companion pets for older people? Papillons are very intelligent and bring lots of positive energy to older owners. Small and elegant lap dogs such as Papillons are the most intelligent among small breeds and will enjoy learning new commands. Papillons were bred as companions and they are happiest when they are spending time with their senior owners. These elegant dogs don't like to be alone and it may be a good idea to get two Papillons instead of just one as they get along great with other Papillons. Papillons need daily walks to meet their daily exercise needs and an older person may enjoy having a delightful walking companion pet such as Papillon. Papillons are relatively easy to care for, which is another advantage for older dog owners. These small dogs will need to be brushed daily to prevent mats especially around their furry ears. They get along fine with other pets, including cats, provided that they got socialized to cats early on. Easily trainable and highly intelligent Papillons are always eager to learn new commands and enjoy to spend as much time as possible with the older owner.

Owning a Papillon pros and cons
Small to medium sized dog breeds for active seniors

Suitable dogs for active seniors

Cocker Spaniels are sweet natured and need an owner who can spend a considerable time grooming the dog and walking with the dog. Cocker Spaniels make great companions for the active seniors who have the energy to spend at least an hour a day walking the dog. Cocker Spaniels really dislike being left alone for long periods of time. Do not get this breed unless you are planning to spend most of the time with the dog. The breed is more suitable for a country home as there's plenty of space for the energetic dog to explore. The owner of the breed will spend a lot of time grooming the dog as the coat needs to be trimmed once every 6 weeks and brushed daily to keep it healthy and tangle free. This is a dog with maximum grooming needs even when the coat is cut short. Owners of the breed recommend investing in a good vacuum cleaner before getting a Cocker Spaniel as there will be a lot of shedded dog hair around the house due to the abundant shedding.

Owning a Cocker Spaniel pros and cons
Best low energy dogs for older adults

Best dogs for older adults

Pekingese are perfect dogs for seniors. These low energy small dogs don't need to spend hours exercising. A couple of daily walks is enough to keep these lap dogs fit. Calm dogs such as Pekingese are very affectionate and need a lot of attention from their owners. Older people often have the time to spend on pampering their fluffy dogs. Pekingese are quiet and make great apartment dogs for seniors. The beautiful coat is high maintenance and the owner of the dog will spend at least half an hour each day on grooming the dog, which includes brushing the dog's coat and wiping the dog's face to keep the dog's facial folds clean and dry.

Owning a Pekingese pros and cons

Peke Mixes

Best dog breeds for older people

Good apartment dogs for seniors

Boston Terriers are calm and quiet dogs that can provide an unconditional love to their owners. Bosties are companion dogs that need to be around their owners most of the time and make a great pet choice for older people. Another reason why Boston Terriers are suitable for older people is because of their low maintenance short coat. Boston Terriers do not bark much and are suitable pets for city people who live in an apartment. Boston Terriers have low exercise requirements and a few daily walks will keep your pet in good shape. Retirees who are looking to get a reasonably active and sociable dog breed should consider Boston Terrier. Keep in mind that brachycephalic breeds (dogs with short snouts), such as Boston Terriers have a tendency to overheat easily during hot weather and should not be exposed to extreme temperatures. Keep the dog in an air conditioned area during hot weather and do not leave your pet in a car alone.

Owning a Boston Terrier pros and cons
Best dog breed for seniors

Best dog breeds for seniors

Seniors who are looking for a small dog breed to enjoy life with may find that the Maltese is a perfect companion pet. Why Maltese dogs are suitable for seniors? The small size of the Maltese dog breed makes this dog easy to carry and also easy to walk. Maltese are conveniently sized and are easy to control during walking. Maltese dogs love a lot of attention and need to spend much of the time with their owners. Since retirees often have a lot of time to dedicate to a companion pet, the Maltese is a good choice for a senior who is looking for a fun small dog to share life with. Maltese dogs have average energy level and it is easy to meet the small dog's exercise needs, which is ideal for older people who don't walk to walk a dog for hours every day. A few short walks every day is sufficient for a Maltese dog to stay happy and active. Another reason why Maltese dogs are good for seniors is because Malteses can comfortably live in most conditions, from a large house to a small apartment. Seniors who live in pet friendly apartments can consider this ornamental dog breed.

Maltese dogs feature a hypoallergenic coat that is also low-shedding, which makes this tiny dog suitable for seniors with respiratory problems who may be sensitive to allergens produced by pets. Seniors who like to groom a pet will find that a Maltese dog will keep the buys as this small dog needs to be brushed daily. Maltese dogs have above average grooming needs and elderly people who enjoy grooming a dog can learn to groom the dog at home by giving the Maltese monthly haircuts tha the dog requires in order to keep the hair neat and beautiful. Maltese are very affectionate with their owners and love to sit on the owner's lap and it is almost impossible to feel lonely in a presence of such an affectionate and loving pet such as the Maltese dog.

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