Enriching Your Retirement Years with Pets

A Message from Fearrington Cares

Retirement and golden years beckon with the promise of less stress and fewer demands. However, we may find that even happily anticipated changes also feel somewhat disruptive and unsettling. Our pets can be one way to buffer the transition and enrich this chapter of life.


1. Pets require an established routine around which we can structure daily life. Maintaining a consistent schedule, especially for eating and sleeping, can be a boon to brain and body health.

2. Walking your pet, playing fetch with your dog, or dragging a string or ribbon around the house as “prey” for your cat to “catch” are good sources of exercise. Keeping physically active equals healthy aging.

3. Our pets are totally dependent on us for their care, safety, and their very lives. That can give us a sense of responsibility and purpose.

4. Pets provide companionship, a wonderful antidote to loneliness and isolation. Their unconditional affection and acceptance remind us that we are loved and lovable.

Pet ownership is not the right choice for everyone; however, incorporating these four points can enhance anyone’s days! For more information on caring for your pets, check out the Chatham Animal and Rescue Education website at www.chathamanimalrescue.org. CARE is a non-profit animal welfare organization that promotes responsible pet ownership through educating the community, providing targeted spay-neuter programs, and fostering homeless dogs and cats until they are placed in loving, permanent homes.