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November 27, 2023

Older pet owners at home in aged care

Older pet owners at home in aged care

Older pet owners at home in aged care.

For many of us pets are family. So, what happens if the time comes when you or your loved one have to go into aged care? What happens to our beloved pets?

According to Trish Ennis, CEO of Australia CAN,  “Sadly, there is a painful absence of government support for older people with pets in in-home care, resulting in not only putting people’s lives in danger but also their much-loved animals being surrendered to shelters across the country!”

Companion Animal Network Australia is calling for urgent Government support for older pet owners at home in aged care reform.


About Companion Animal Network Australia (Australia CAN)

Companion Animal Network Australia (Australia CAN) is Australia’s peak body representing companion animals. It comprises six member agencies, each aiming to make the world a better place for pets. Through national campaigns, partnerships and initiatives, we celebrate the human-animal bond and promote responsible pet ownership. We use our national voice to campaign for the humane treatment of all companion animals and we rally support for programmes that deliver high welfare standards. To discover more, visit https://australiacan.org.au/


About Pet Friendly Aged Care

Pet Friendly Aged Care is run by the Companion Animal Network Australia (Australia CAN) whose six member agencies aim to make the world a better place for pets through national campaigns, partnerships and initiatives. Pet-Friendly Aged Care was established to highlight the often-catastrophic emotional harm caused when older people are forced to give up their pets upon moving into an aged care home, and to provide a more practical way forward. To discover more, visit https://petfriendlyagedcare.com.au/


Status of pets in aged care

CANA’s Survey on the Status of Pets in Aged Care facilities and at home shows 86% of older adults with pets experience improved mental and physical health. When it comes to older adults living at home, the survey reveals 61% of older adults live alone, and 74% of older adults with pets say their animals provide companionship and reduce loneliness.

Whilst 40% of older adults who receive a Home Care Package (HCP) have pets, only 9% of these pet owners receive pet care support, such as walking their dog (64% need help) and taking their pet to the vet (62% need help).


How you can help

CANA needs the public’s help to convince the Government to include pet friendly aged care support as part of their aged care reform. Help reach 50,000 signatures by signing and sharing their petition for #PetFriendlyAgedCare!

For more detail and to read CANA’s submission to the Government, please visit https://petfriendlyagedcare.com.au/surveys