Art of Aging: Dogs helping seniors and vice versa

Tamala Edwards Image
Thursday, December 28, 2017
Art of Aging
Art of Aging. Tamala Edwards reports during Action News at Noon on December 28, 2017.

For 66-year-old Rosie Alleva of Malvern, her dog Stella Grace is the perfect companion.

"I feel loved by her and I love being able to love her and tell her how much I love her and always like make a fuss over her," Alleva said.

She is the second dog that Alleva has adopted from Senior Dog Haven and Hospice in Wilmington, a shelter that specializes in senior pups.

Sixty-percent of their adopters are senior humans.

"They're very calm, which is nice if you're older yourself," Alleva said.

All of the dogs are at least 7 years old and most are completely housebroken, just looking for a loving home to live out their golden years.

"They're not looking for five mile walks. They want a nice little walk down the street. They just want to sit next to you and maybe share your food, they're older-person ready," Eleanor Garrett, Co-Chair of the Senior Dog Haven and Hospice, said.

For the seniors who adopt them, it creates a whole new purpose in life.

"They give so much love, comfort and joy, I think it makes getting up in the morning easier," Jennifer Karakul, Founder of Senior Dog Haven and Hospice, said.

"Sometimes they'll look into your eyes and you can tell that they trust you and that they need you," adopter Patrick Connell said.

It creates a mutually beneficial relationship that can be life-changing.

"It's like having your best friend with you at all times. As much as you give them, they give back twice as much," Connell said.

Watch previous Art of Aging reports:

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