Dogs are good companions for people of all ages, especially so if you’re older. Pretty much all the studies show that older people who live with pets do better.
Did you know that just stroking a pet can lower your blood pressure? And physically, you do better simply because you have to move around more. Just opening the door for them every time they want to go out or come in gets you out of your chair many times a day. Not to mention that going for walks and play time are good for both you and your pet.
The more we communicate with our dogs, the better companions they can be. You will get to understand more of what they are saying to you. Did you ever notice the difference in the barks your dog uses? There’s the whimper at the door if they want to go out to “do their business,” and perhaps the excited bark of asking for a walk. And then there’s the loud, threatening growl or bark in the night. I know I never need to wonder about what that noise is in the night — and with a creaky old farmhouse, I hear a lot of them. If my dog doesn’t react to it, I know it’s nothing to worry about.
The relationship you have with your dog is like any other relationship. The more you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it. Pay attention to your dog’s basic needs of food and shelter, but also pay attention to what they are trying to tell you, to communicate to you. You will both feel better.
If you are thinking about having a new friend, check out the pets that are available for adoption at the Central Aroostook Humane Society. There are many of them waiting for their new friend at 24 Cross St. in Presque Isle.
Always remember to be responsible — spay and neuter your pets.
Brenda Barker is a member of the Central Aroostook Humane Society Board of Directors.