Senior living facilities and family pets might not seem to be a perfect match, but the truth is that many facilities will allow guests to bring a family pet in for a visit under certain circumstances. This can prove to be very exciting for your family member who is in the facility — especially if he or she had to leave a pet behind upon moving in. If you think that your loved one would enjoy a short visit from a family pet, here are some plans to keep in mind as you work toward this goal.
Ask About Registering The Pet
It's often a no-no to show up at a care facility with a pet, as many facilities will ask families of residents to register a pet for a visit in advance. Speak to someone at the senior living facility's information desk to learn what the registration process entails. Typically, you'll need to select the date and time that you wish to visit with the pet, as well as answer a few questions about the pet's behavior. Understandably, staff at these facilities want animals to be properly behaved during their visit.
Figure Out The Best Visit Time
In order to select the best time to visit with the pet, talk to your family member about his or her daily routine and how he or she feels at certain times. Depending on the person's reason for staying in the senior living facility, there may be an ideal time to visit with the pet. For example, your loved one might feel freshest in the morning, but may begin to fade after lunch and need a nap in the afternoon. In this scenario, the visit with the pet will go well if you opt for a morning visit, perhaps for an hour or so after breakfast.
Arrive Early For A Walk
Visiting a new environment can be stressful for a pet such as a dog, and you may find that the animal is doubly stressed if it doesn't enjoy riding in the car. It's a good idea to plan to arrive at the senior living facility well in advance of your scheduled time. Your early arrival will allow you time to walk the dog around the neighborhood or, depending on the location of the facility, even around the grounds if pets are allowed. The pet will then be calmer and less stressed when it's subjected to the new environment inside the facility.
To learn more about visiting your parent at a senior living facility, contact a company like Good Shepherd Health Center.