Ah…retirement. How nice it would be to have free time to come and go as you please. But for many people 65 years and older, retirement generates feelings of boredom, loneliness or illness.

But retirement doesn’t have to be stressful. Studies have shown the presence of an animal helps reduce stress and provides a companionship that can lift spirits and relieve depression.

Dogs and cats don’t judge us; they provide unconditional love that can enrich their owners’ lives. Pets don’t care if their owner walks slow, can’t hear well, or speaks with difficulty.

Pets simply want to love and to be loved.

Contact with a pet – wet kisses, nuzzles, petting – has been clinically proven to reduce high blood pressure and calm people.

Sadly enough, older animals (much like older people) sometimes are abandoned in favor of the young. As a result, the SPCA receives many dogs and cats more than five years old that still have plenty of good years to share with an owner. These mature animals usually are house-trained and have calmer dispositions, are less excitable and are easier to care for than younger animals.

Purina is underwriting “Pets for People,” a program enabling seniors 60 years and older to adopt a pet free-of-charge from participating animal shelters, including the SPCA. Included are the animal’s initial vaccination, identification tag, spay/neuter, as well as a leash and collar, food and water bowls, and a box of Purina Dog or Cat Chow.

If you or someone you know is interested in this program, visit the SPCA of Texas, 362 S. Industrial Blvd. (behind Reunion Arena), and we’ll do our best to match you with a loving companion – free of charge.

Adoption Update

Dr. Faust, the homeless pup highlighted in July’s Pet of the Month column, has found a new home. Many thanks for giving him a second chance.

Resale Shop Benefits SPCA

Located at 14350 Marsh Lane at Spring Valley in the Brookhaven Village Shopping Center, Repeats resale shop accepts gently-worn clothing, books, furniture and other items.

Your donations help feed and care for homeless animals at the SPCA. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Volunteers are needed to help sort and sell. Call Jody Ferguson at 241-8066 for more information.

Recycling Tip

Don’t forget to recycle packaging from your pets’ food – tin cans, cardboard boxes and large paper sacks.

SPCA Volunteering

August 3 – Pet Therapy Training Session from 10 a.m. to noon.

August 10 – Volunteer Orientation at 2 p.m.

August 17 – Mobile Adoption Counseling & Adoption Desk Training from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

All volunteer sessions held in the SPCA library, 362 S. Industrial Blvd. (behind Reunion Arena). Call 651-9611 for information.

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