The Influence of Pets on Decisions of Older Adults’ with Chronic Conditions Public Deposited

Many older adults view pets as companions, and are responsible for their pet’s care and well-being. Research suggests that people prioritize their pet’s needs, although it may jeopardize their own safety. Some older adults forego, delay, or refuse care in order to remain with their pet. In this study I used constructivist grounded theory to explore and describe the influence of pets on older adults’ decision making and chronic-condition management. I conducted semistructured individual interviews with community-dwelling adults (N = 20) aged 60 or older who had at least one chronic disease and who were living with a pet. Participants were asked questions about their relationship with pets, decision making, chronic-disease management, and pets’ influence on these processes.

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