People in a wheelchair are mainly homebound longer than anyone else and one way to battle anxiety, depression, and negative thoughts is to adopt a pet. Animals are not only therapeutic but can also become your best friends and true family members, especially since you will be spending a lot of time with them.
However, wheelchair users should be careful as not all animals will make great companions for them. Some are extremely demanding and active and you may not be able to search for them in all corners of the house if they weasel their way out of the cage. So, let’s take a look at animals that can prove true companions for you.
Besides the fact that they look cool and have a bossy attitude, lizards can be considered low-maintenance because you don’t have to take them out for walks. However, they require special housing conditions, including an escape-proof aquarium large enough to allow them to stretch their legs, and a permanent heating source.
They are not pretentious when it comes to food, so most insects and a handful of fresh lettuce leaves should suffice. Some lizards will even love to cuddle with their owners and express their emotions, especially if you spend a lot of time with them regularly.
According to official statistics, 1 in 4 households in America has at least one hamster pet, making these adorable rodents amongst the country’s favorite animals. They are low-maintenance and some breeds are also very affectionate, which means they are great companions.
Thanks to their small dimensions they can become great first pets for your children but you need to keep in mind that they are mainly nocturnal creatures, meaning they shouldn’t sleep in the same room as your kids.
Hamsters are social creatures and they love attention so it would be best to place their cage in the living room or on the hallway, where everyone has access. However, make sure to purchase a hamster-proof cage as they are very sneaky and they will make escaping their sole purpose in life, which means no wheelchair gloves you might find on Caregivingmag will help you ride so fast to catch them if they break free from their cage.
Believe it or not, dogs are the perfect companions for people with reduced mobility. They are extremely kind and loving creatures and many of them can be trained to become perfect service dogs.
Labradors and Golden Retrievers are the most popular breeds amongst service dogs because they are loyal and patient but only after they reached adulthood. These breeds have a lot of energy in their first years of life so keeping up with them while in a wheelchair can be difficult.
Poodles, German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Dobermans, Bernese Mountain Dogs, and bully breed mixes are also great due to their unique set of features. Apart from being kind and loyal, they can also be easily trained and can remain focused to assist you in your daily tasks.
Unlike other breeds, they don’t use their instincts like playing, fighting or preying but rather prefer the company of humans. These animals are also friendly and have the perfect size to make themselves useful around the house.
If you don’t feel like walking your dog every morning or comforting them during a thunderstorm, birds are also great pet options. They spend most of their time inside cages and they require little of your attention.
However, they do enjoy freedom so you should consider leaving them fly outside their cage for at least one hour daily. Just make sure they are fully trained first as you won’t be able to chase them if they don’t want to get inside their cage again.