Owning a pet as a senior citizen can be rewarding on a number of different levels. For one thing, there is the unconditional love and companionship given by a pet. Our law firm focuses on estate planning and elder law matters, so we interact with many senior citizens. It is our business to gain an understanding of the challenges that people typically face when they are passing through their golden years and the twilight years that will inevitably follow.
If you are a senior citizen that has been married for decades, and you lose your spouse at some point in time, the sense of loneliness that you experience can be difficult to handle. This can be compounded if you have limited family members living in your area, and of course, even if you do have loved ones nearby, people live busy lives.
Everyone is different, but for most people, this would not be a very enjoyable way to live. If you were in this position, and you were to purchase or adopt a pet, the new addition could have a transformative effect. While all pets provide some type of companionship, we will focus on the benefits of dog ownership here.
Man’s Best Friend
Without question, dogs have earned the title of “man’s best friend,” and of course, many of our seniors can also benefit from the love and companionship that dogs provide. In addition to the fact that you are no longer all alone, dogs provide protection. Even small dogs are useful on this level, because they are very alert, and they can make a lot of noise when they hear something unusual taking place outside the door.
The benefits certainly do not stop there. When you have a dog, you have a very good reason to get outside on a daily basis to take your pet for walks. Taking a stroll is obviously quite physically healthy for you as well, and it can be very good for your state of mind to leave your home and enjoy the great outdoors.
There is also the matter of human interaction. You have a conversation piece with you when you are walking your dog, so you will invariably get into discussions with other dog owners and people that like dogs. Plus, if you go to the same dog park often, you will invariably see the same people and you will probably make some new friends.
Riverside Pet Planning Attorneys
All the above may sound very good to you, but there is going to be a logical concern among people that are up there in years. If you get yourself a puppy or a young dog when you are in your 70s, how can you be sure that you will outlive the pooch? What would happen if your dog was left alone? These questions cause many people that are interested to turn away from dog ownership late in their lives.
Fortunately, the Riverside pet planning attorneys here at our firm can provide you with the ideal solution that can allow you to bring a dog into your home with total peace of mind. You may be surprised to hear that it is possible to establish a pet trust in the state of California. The way that it works is that you name a trustee to administer the trust after you pass away, and of course, your dog would be first beneficiary. Your trustee would use the funds in the trust to provide for your dog in accordance with your instructions.
You would also name a secondary beneficiary to inherit any remainder that may be left in the trust after the dog is gone. When you have a pet trust in place, you can enjoy all the benefits of pet ownership without any worries. Many seniors leave any remainder in the pet trust to benefit pet charities such as Best Friends Animal Society, The Mary S. Roberts Pet Adoption Center, BideaWee Pet Adoption Center , the Humane Society, and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Schedule a Consultation Right Now!
If you would like to speak with one of our Riverside pet planning attorneys about the possible creation of a pet trust, we would be glad to accommodate you. Schedule an appointment by giving us a call at 951-888-1460 or you can reach us through our contact page on this website.
Have a question? Ask Dennis.
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