How to Choose a Companion Dog as You Age

Need some company in the form of a furry friend? Adopting a dog has proven health benefits and can make great companions, but what breed is right for you?

Lindsay Engle, Writing for
4-minute read

Exercise Requirements

Dogs are excellent at keeping us young and active. Having a dog is an easy way to keep yourself on a routine and ensure that you are getting out and meeting people during walks. Some dogs have significantly higher energy levels that require more than two walks a day.

Consider your realistic schedule, dedication to additional walks in a day, and ability to consistently allow your dog the freedom to safely run free in an open area when selecting a breed.


Nothing makes for a better companion than an intelligent and properly trained dog. Trainability is an important part of social interaction. Breeds that are easiest to train include:

  • Border Collies
  • Poodles
  • German Shepherds
  • Golden Retrievers
  • Doberman Pinschers
  • Shetland Sheepdogs
  • Labrador Retrievers

Age of Dog

We all know puppies are adorable, but they don’t always make the best pets for those who are older. Consider adopting a senior or middle-aged dog. They’re usually already potty-trained and don’t need as much attention. They’re also usually happy to jump on the couch and watch daily soap operas with you!

Just like you, aging pets need vitamins and supplements to keep them healthy. To avoid more serious aging issues, and to prolong their life, make sure to ask your veterinarian what doggy supplements you should give them.

Another thing to consider is pet insurance. It’s become extremely popular to insure your pet due to the high cost of medical care. 

Consider a Backup Plan

It’s not something you want to think about, but what will happen to your companion if something happened to you? Make sure you have a backup plan for your dog for these cases. Too often pets are left without a plan and end up in the pound. The chances of them getting adopted again is a coin toss. Reach out to your veterinarian, family, and friends to see what options you have. It will give you peace of mind knowing that your pet will be taken care of if anything happened to you.

Remember, choosing the right companion dog to grow old with you is not a quick decision. Take the time to research all your options. Talk to family and friends to get their advice and additional insight. The right pet will be a great addition to your home.

Lindsay Engle is the Marketing Specialist at MedicareFAQ, a learning resource center for seniors. Lindsay loves working in the senior healthcare industry. Aside from her job, she has a great passion for animals and loves boating. In her spare time, she enjoys snuggling on the couch with her pets as well as fishing with her boyfriend.