We love pets here at YooToo! Between the team we have two cats, one dog and a rabbit. So together we know that pets are an important part of owner’s lives. For older people, pets can provide companionship, a structure to the day, encourage exercise and social contact (for example, through walking the dog) and much more. But we also know that as we get older, looking after a pet can become more difficult. So we’ve gathered a range of services and charities that you might find useful if you or your loved one needs support looking after a pet or would like a pet in your lives.
The Cinnamon Trust
A national charity that can help you look after your pet should you need it. They recongise the treasured relationship between owners and their pets and work with owners to overcome any issues that might arise. There is a network of over 15,000 volunteers across the UK that help out, from taking a dog for a walk for those who aren’t able to anymore to fostering a pet for those who need to spend time in hospital.
Find out more on the Cinnamon Trust website.
Borrow My Doggy
This is a local dog walking service and can be useful for older people who are unable to take the dog out for a walk. It works by connecting trusted local people with dog owners with the aim of helping owners when they need it. For their premium service it costs £44.99 per year, this gives you access to local dog walkers who are volunteers (no further payment is required). Find out more on the Borrow My Doggy website.
Pet Fostering Services Scotland
If you or loved one is unable to look after a pet for a period of time, for example due to being admitted to hospital or becoming ill, this organisation can arrange short term emergency care. The organisation has a range of volunteers who can welcome your pet into their home and ensure your pet is well looked after.
Give A Dog A Bone
This Scottish charity supports people aged 65+ to have their own pet who might have previously been put off by the cost. Uniquely rehoming homeless pets and helping to tackle loneliness for older people by creating a new companionship that can help people feel less lonely. Find out more on their website.
For those that might not want a pet, but would like the occasional canine companionship, they have a community project that provides a friendly place for people to meet. Whether it’s dog walks, knitting, languages for beginners or a meet the rescue dog session – it’s a great opportunity to meet rescue dogs and socialise at the same time. These activities currently take place in Troon and Glasgow.
Dementia Dogs is a charity set up in Scotland to support people living with dementia by providing a highly trained dog in the persons home. Routine can help people living with dementia as it progresses, as well as bringing companionship and smiles to a household. To find out more and apply for a dementia dog, visit their website (and check out their social media pages for lots of lovely dog photos and awesome stories!).
If you’ve read this article and think that you or someone you love would like a loyal pet companion, take a look at the advice from Age UK who have comprehensive information about what owning a pet might involve.
Do you have any advice or tips? Perhaps a service that you’ve found useful? Share it by commenting below.