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Geriatrics 2016, 1(4), 24; doi:10.3390/geriatrics1040024

Is Pet Ownership Helpful in Reducing the Risk and Severity of Geriatric Depression?

Department of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College, 525 E. 68th Street, Box 140, NY, NY 10065, USA
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Received: 21 July 2016 / Accepted: 21 September 2016 / Published: 4 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Depressive Disorder in the Elderly)
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Abstract

Many community-dwelling older adults are searching for ways to remain mentally and physically healthy as they age. One frequently offered suggestion is for older people to adopt a pet to avoid loneliness, to stay socially engaged, and to stave off depression. Despite the ubiquity of this advice in popular culture, research findings are equivocal on whether pet ownership is beneficial to the physical and psychological health of older adults. This article evaluates published data relating to pet ownership and its possible impact on depression and related symptoms in the elderly. View Full-Text
Keywords: pet ownership; animal assisted therapy; older adults; depression; loneliness pet ownership; animal assisted therapy; older adults; depression; loneliness
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Needell, N.J.; Mehta-Naik, N. Is Pet Ownership Helpful in Reducing the Risk and Severity of Geriatric Depression? Geriatrics 2016, 1, 24.

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