Pet care for the disabled/elderly

kef888November 13, 2008

Hi everyone,

I am a student doing a university project, and we're looking to create a device that would aid the disabled/elderly in looking after their pets.

One idea is a device that would lower/lift food and water bowls to/from the floor to prevent people from having to bend over. Do you think something like this would be useful?

Or do you have any other ideas about the sorts of problems elderly/disabled people face when caring for their pets?

If you do have any ideas or relevant personal experiences, please do let me know.

Thank you!

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jomuir

We used to feed and water a dog next door that was being neglected terribly. What we did was take a coffee can and poked two holes, ran string and lowered the can over the fence. It wasn't very elegant, but it served its purpose. You could improve it but I would be concerned about 2 strings hanging over where the pet eats all day, so this isn't really viable for what you want to do.

If it were for a cat/small dog, I would think about creating a raised feeding area, easy for disabled to access, and the pet could reach it by the pet stairs that are marketed now, or some version of that. It could work for cat's litter box also (in a different part of the home of course). For a larger pet, someone else may have a good idea for you.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2008 at 12:05PM
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runsnwalken

In gen people who are in this situation shouldn't IMO keep pets unless they have plans for what happens to the animals in question, and the species they keep. Most people like this cannot afford good/decent pet food, or are too lazy, ignorant to see to that, stats show diet is often the most neglected aspect of pet care. I think this is an excellent idea though KF88 because people are not going to just wake up and see sense,and it is true there are curtain arrangements where I see it to be very very good.

I'm lucky my parents will take my cats in the future, so bad things don't happen to them in the group home or the other way around with the people.

Cats especially are by law, in MN at least, (only if loose and at large,free roaming) considered wild animals, and the ways group homes use to limit/control. problems such as scratching are barbaric as well as possibly dangerous to the people who live with them, we had a woman get bit by a de clawed cat- and I got bit by the cat when she brought the cat to work . On the other hand I understand why de-clawing would come up- my dad got a blood infection from a clawing that one of our previous cats in my childhood- the answer is then just not to have um in the first place.

Many people do not like cats/dogs/pets, or are ill equipped to live with them especially those who are violent and unstable, we had someone throw a chair at one of my friends, at work, she, the attacker, probably lives in a group home, a lot of the people at my job do.. The victim got a bruised leg. - I asked what happened to stop the behavior from happening again., the victim reported to me the attackers mother was "rich and powerful" and so nothing was done.

On the whole through if everyone is okay with it, accepts its what the animal does without resorting to cruel solutions, and no new people are going into that arrangement who may have an allergy, its a good idea.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2008 at 8:35PM
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Meghane

I don't classify a caring friend or neighbor as a "device" but IMHO that is exactly what someone in that situation needs most.

Growing up, we had a next door neighbor who was elderly and had 3 cats. I totally LOVED those cats (they were indoor/outdoor like most cats in the neighborhood including my own). She could of course afford decent food and veterinary care, but couldn't drive to the store or vet herself. My mom helped with that aspect. As a kid, I helped clean the litter box, watch the kitties when they were outside, and helped bring them inside at night. I also flea-combed them (there wasn't good flea control in those days).

Devices are nice, but nothing beats another person to help out. It's a shame that people aren't neighborly any more. and "devices" are the next best thing.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2008 at 8:57PM
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runsnwalken

It may not be pretty but its honesty..

However if someone is willing to help out, then by all means its a good idea. I agree that people are not as nice as they once were and for a lot of people pets do help.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2008 at 9:29AM
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jomuir

Meghane is right, it's a shame people aren't as neighborly as they used to be. Kids are taught to fear people and it's unheard of for a kid to go into a neighbors house for many people. Kids are missing out on good experience and learning to help others and of course, the recipients aren't getting the help they could really use. Its sad all the way around.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 1:21PM
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runsnwalken

I don't know about that, I went to neighbors houses, when I was younger and I have mild Autism, hearing loss, and am legally blind in my right eye, plus a few years ago I went with my dads EX girlfriend kids friend, a 7 year old girl, they have a 3 year old in the same home and get this, a massive intact male pit bull-elderly but still intact!.

It depends on the people.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 1:44PM
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