Pets and Loving Seniors (PALS)

Senior citizens in our community are often isolated. Nursing homes and elderly housing often serve to remove seniors from the mainstream of the community, which results in an “out of sight, out of mind” response from the community at large. The elderly often suffer from depression and isolation, and their physical health is affected by the situation. Frustration, confusion, grief and loss of self-esteem are daily occurrences in the lives of institutionalized or isolated elders. Distance and ever busier schedules often prevent younger family members from staying as connected as they would like.

Pets provide many links in the chain of wellness for the elderly. Companionship and unconditional love are the linchpins, giving the older person a focus and someone to share their days. Studies have proven that people who live with pets have lower rates of heart attack and heart disease. Seniors who have pets or who interact with companion animals on a regular basis tend to be more connected with reality, and suffer less from depression and dementia. Pets also give seniors a way to stay connected with the community by interacting with others about the animal.

PAWS of Bainbridge Island and North Kitsap honors the bond between seniors and pets by providing a range of services.

PAWS is looking for people over 65 who live independently and would like the companionship of a pet but whose finances won’t stretch to pet ownership.

A healthy, older dog or cat could join your home as a permanent foster. PAWS would retain ownership and pay for food, litter and vet visits.

This arrangement is a “win-win” for cats not likely to be adopted due to their age and for seniors who want to enjoy the companionship of a pet.

Contact us for more information.

Can’t afford veterinary services for your pet? PAWS can help!

To apply for financial assistance, pick up an application at:

If you are unable to visit any of these, please call 206-842-2451 x3 and leave a voicemail with your mailing address requesting an application and one will be mailed to you, or email and we will email you an application.