Pets love unconditionally. They are devoted to us at our best and our worst. Whether it is a canine companion, a colorful feathered friend, or a frisky feline, animals bring joy and improve quality of life.
At Sunrise Senior Living, we believe in the power of the paw. Every community has a resident cat or dog, and residents are free to engage with them as much—or as little—as you choose. And, you are welcome to bring your own pet that you care for yourself!
While all pets need homes, our communities typically turn first to local rescue organizations to adopt a pet. These animals tend to be calm and friendly, making them well-suited for our residents. And, rescuing pets saves lives!
Sunrise Community Adoption Events
In a recent demonstration of Sunrise’s commitment to helping animals in need find their forever homes, 14 of our communities in Maryland, northern Virginia, and Washington, D.C. partnered with local shelters to host pet adoption events.
What a success these events were! Sunrise residents, team members, and local families adopted a total of 24 dogs and cats. Here’s a few stories of these lucky animals and their new families:
Two dogs and a cat, Jigglypuff, Pip, and Lou, found homes with Sunrise team members and their families.
Dr. Levinson, a resident of Sunrise on Connecticut Avenue in Washington, D.C., adopted Chica, a senior dachshund. He is over the moon with his new pup, stating, “This is my 88th birthday present. I’ll spare no expense for my daughter!”
Journey, a five-year-old pup, was scheduled to be euthanized the day before being rescued by Knine Rescue. She made such an impression at the Sunrise of Chevy Chase, MD, adoption event, that the community took her in as their new house dog!
Residents have already fallen in love with Journey, who now spends her days relaxing on the patio, going for walks, waiting by the door for belly rubs, and receiving plenty of treats from team members and residents. The joy she gives and receives is a clear case for why people need pets—and vice versa.
Older Adults and Animals
Animals improve our lives in many ways, including:
- Companionship: Animals are usually very loyal. They sit by our side, lead us outdoors, and offer unconditional love. Pets are there for us in ways people can’t be. Our animal companions keep our secrets and share in our joys and sorrows. They give us purpose.
- Social engagement: Animals also attract attention. A walk often gives pet owners the chance to meet neighbors and make new friends—both human and animal. If you take your canine or feline companion for regular strolls, you’ll likely see your social circle expand.
- Better health: Research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows having a pet yields many physical health benefits. Among them are decreased stress, lower blood pressure, less risk of depression, and even healthier cholesterol levels. The very act of petting a furry or feathered friend is a stress buster.
- More activity: Pet owners move more and sit less. Taking your pets for a daily walk can improve stamina and core strength. Animal companions help seniors avoid health risks associated with isolation and a sedentary life, such as diabetes, obesity, heart problems, and falls.
If you or a loved one is considering adding a pet to the family, an older animal might be ideal.
And, to learn more about senior living, call a Sunrise community near you to schedule a tour. The community pet will be excited to meet you!