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Companion pets are the perfect partners for isolated older adults. Whether they’re apart from family or in socially distant living situations, there is no problem a warm and cuddly animal can’t ease.
If you’re thinking of buying the perfect gift for your older loved one, look no further. We compile all the best companion pets for seniors right here. From robotic dogs to chirping birds, we have it all covered. Let’s take a look.
Joy For All Companion Robotic Dogs were designed almost specifically to keep nursing home residents company. Isolation is difficult for everyone, and having little to no social interaction can contribute to negative emotions and mental challenges.
The Joy For All Freckled Pup is one of the friendliest in the company’s line of lovable robot pets. It has an adorable freckled muzzle, big floppy ears, and a super thick coat that makes it perfect for hugging and cuddling all day long.
Owners can talk and interact with the Freckled Pup as often as they please, and surprise – the dog will bark back! This makes it our pick for the best companion pet for older adults. Learn more about it below.
The Joy For All Freckled Pup nabs our top spot for the best robotic pet for isolated seniors. This social robot is perfect as it provides…
Ageless Innovations’ Joy For All line is one of the leading brands for robotic pets. They have pets for the elderly, young kids…
What seniors look for in companion robots may be very different from the traits we find so adorable in real pets…
For a more true-to-life experience, the Joy For All Silver Tabby is the perfect elderly companion pet. With more features and movements…
Birds are another worthy companion for seniors. They’re low-maintenance, great listeners, and beautiful to look at, too…
When it comes to robotic pets that are low-maintenance, you can’t go wrong with a cat. This is why we have another…
There is a wide range of companion toys that can help combat loneliness for elders in social isolation. If you’re thinking of buying…
Even during pre-COVID times, social robots and companion animals have been popular. Back then, these robots played the same…
If you’re aiming for a simple yet absolutely adorable buy, look no further than the Marsjoy Talking Rabbit. Yup, a talking rabbit can…
Senior citizens may find it a bit challenging to take care of real-life animals. However, even real fish are easy to watch over…
Robot pets are toy animals with lifelike features meant to emulate real-life pets. These robots range from cuddly dogs to realistic companion cats, with various characteristics that make them similar to real-life animals.
Robot pets can serve different purposes. Some are meant for children to play with, others as companions for older adults. Aside from companion robots that can aid those in social isolation, there are robot pets created for the purpose of working, mainly in fields of military, medicine, construction, space exploration, and much more.
Commercial pets are usually the most accessible and affordable and come in the form of robotic dogs, cats, and even birds. They’re battery-operated, containing sensors all over their body that allow them to respond to human touch. They can also make realistic noises and have sound-and-movement combinations mirrored after real pets, like blinking eyes, wagging tails, wiggling ears, and more.
We mentioned that one of the purposes of a robot pet is to provide companionship to older adults. A few studies show that having a companion pet can do wonders for anyone’s health. For example, petting an animal can decrease our brain’s levels of cortisone – aka the stress hormone – and boost the release of the happy chemical serotonin. Along with this, the heart rate and blood pressure are also decreased, according to Cleveland Clinic. Pets can also help combat loneliness in those who are required to isolate.
The same holds true for people dealing with mental health disorders, be it anxiety, depression, or PTSD. A study conducted in Australia showed the effectiveness of psychiatric assistance dogs (PAD) use in reducing anxiety and mitigating undesirable behaviors. Robotic pet therapy, while still a relatively new method, has thus far proven to have similar benefits to that of traditional pet-assisted therapy.
Older adults may require special needs when it comes to owning a pet. These owners may have limited physical or mental capabilities that prevent them from being able to fully watch over a hyperactive dog or cat. So what is the ideal furry friend for an elderly individual? There’s not just one single pet fit for isolated seniors. At the end of the day, it all depends on their specific situation, capabilities, and needs. And more often than not, what seniors need is companionship. The ideal companion pets for these people would be those that combat loneliness and improve their well-being without causing stress.
Generally, small dogs can be a healthy partner for senior citizens. Many are easy to groom, require only a few hours of walking, and do not need much supervision. Cats of any breed are also quite ideal as they are very independent, can groom themselves, and don’t need to be “potty-trained” like dogs do. Apart from the two, birds and fish can also make wonderful companions for the elderly. They don’t require a lot of physical activity, maintenance, or grooming and can stay in one place for long periods of time.
On the other hand, a real pet may be too much for the older adult. This is where robot pets come in handy: they offer a responsibility-free alternative to owning a real pet, but with much of the same advantages and health benefits.
Residents of nursing homes are more at risk of developing feelings of depression and isolation due to the lack of social interaction in their everyday lives. One way to combat feelings of loneliness is by having a companion pet by their side. Whether it’s a real pet or a robotic pet may depend on each individual’s situation, but both are shown to be helpful in improving the health and overall quality of living of elderly nursing home residents.
There are also plenty of other ways animatronic pets can help the elderly who are experiencing cognitive decline. One program done by the Florida Department of Elder Affairs has successfully shown that robot pets help with cognitive impairments in patients who live with Alzheimer’s disease. The pets were able to aid patients with memory recall after a few days of socializing. After a year, 70% of the adoptees also indicated a significant reduction in feelings of isolation.
|Joy For All Freckled Pup||• Beautiful soft fur |
• Great for all ages
• Realistic movements
|Joy For All Golden Pup||• Low-maintenance robot dog |
• Huggable fur
• Lifelike sounds and gestures
|Joy For All Silver Tabby||• Hypoallerenic synthetic coat |
• Lovable pet
• Easy to take care of
|Perfect Petzzz Kitten||• Cuddly soft kitten |
• Comes with cute accessories
• Realistic heartbeat feature
|Haktoys Singing & Chirping Bird||• Repeats what you say |
• Colorful coats
|Original Petzzz Orange Tabby||• Adorable sleeping cat |
• Comes with its own bed
• Purrs like a real kitten
|Hasbro Disney The Lion King Plush||• Over 100 sound and movement combinations |
• Soft plush
• Repeats lines from the movie
|Perfect Petzzz Chocolate Lab||• Has a heartbeat|
• Comes with its own collar
• Makes a great companion pet
|Marsjoy Talking Rabbit||• Cute floppy ears |
• Soft plush material
• Affordable companion toy
|Zuru Robo Alive Fish Playset||• Color-changing fish |
• Can swim in water
• Long battery life
The Joy For All Freckled Pup nabs our top spot for the best robotic pet for isolated seniors. This social robot is perfect as it provides interactive play for older adults in social isolation.
Designed with a beautiful, thick brown coat, a freckled muzzle, large floppy ears, and piercing eyes, the Freckled Pup from Ageless Innovation will paw its way into anyone’s heart one bark at a time. It comes with the same innovative features that we love in other Ageless Innovation companion pets, like bark-back technology, realistic movements, and a heartbeat that makes it incredibly lifelike. According to the company CEO Ted Fischer, this realism is what makes the toys perfect for seniors.
Give your elderly loved ones the gift of a warm, hassle-free companion that they can form attachments with. The Freckled Pup’s advanced technology makes for rich social interactive play for those living in senior communities. The robot puppy’s sensors are located all over its body, so one can touch its head, rub its belly, or hug it and stimulate realistic responses like nuzzling, barking, and wagging its tail.
Ageless Innovations’ Joy For All line is one of the leading brands for robotic pets. They have pets for the elderly, young kids, and everyone in between. After all, there’s no age limit to the joys of pet ownership. However, the Joy For All Golden Pup is a particularly great toy for isolated seniors.
Much like the Freckled Pup, the robotic golden retriever from the same line sparks joy no matter where it is. It has the same state-of-the-art features that make it a realistic substitute for traditional pets, without the added responsibility.
The Golden Pup is covered in a beautiful light brown coat with synthetic fur modeled after real golden retrievers. It even sounds like them, too. The puppy’s bark and noises were recorded from real dogs, making its sounds as realistic and lifelike as possible. Its touch-interactive sensors make for a personally rich experience; by petting, belly-rubbing, and hugging the robotic pup, your elderly loved ones can boost their mood and improve their overall quality of living.
What seniors look for in companion robots may be very different from the traits we find so adorable in real pets. For example, even though a hyper-active puppy may bring joy to the whole family, leaving a physically limited older adult to care for one may not be the best idea. That’s why our next pick is an adorable stuffed animal: the Perfect Petzzz Kitten.
Covered in beautiful synthetic black fur, the Perfect Petzzz Kitten won’t make a mess. It won’t bite your shoe, chew up a hair tie, or poop in medium-pile rugs. Instead, it will sit calmly beside you as you pet it, snoring happily into blissful sleep. It’s also made of hypoallergenic fur so the owner does not have to worry about an allergic reaction to pet hair.
We’ve mentioned above that the independent nature of real cats make them an ideal fit for socially isolated nursing home residents. After all, they’re low-maintenance and can pretty much clean up after themselves as long as there’s a litter box and cat food nearby. That’s why a robotic cat makes an even better companion pet in social isolation. If your senior loved one is longing for physical touch and companionship, robotic stuffed animals are perfect for providing much-needed two-way interaction.
For a more true-to-life experience, the Joy For All Silver Tabby is the perfect elderly companion pet. With more features and movements than a traditional stuffed animal, the beautiful silver tabby mimics the sounds and movements of a real cat to provide the best social experience for anyone.
If you’re someone who misses the purring of a real cat, the VibraPurr technology developed by Ageless Innovation ensures that the tabby responds to each touch almost like a real animal would. It rubs its head against you and meows so sweetly you won’t know the difference.
Older adults are sure to love its size too. At 10 inches tall and 15 inches wide, the size of the Silver Tabby rivals that of a large cat – perfect for napping and hugging whenever one needs a quick stress reliever.
Birds are another worthy companion for seniors. They’re low-maintenance, great listeners, and beautiful to look at, too. While they don’t encourage physical activity or even tactile comfort the way robot dogs or cats do, they make the perfect simple partner for those who are living in nursing homes and away from the presence of family members.
The Haktoys Singing & Chirping Bird is a wonderful parakeet that loves to sing, entertaining anyone of all ages day and night. It is designed with a microchip that senses sound from its surroundings, so if you talk to it, it will respond by singing a beautiful bird song.
With a diameter of 5 x 7.5 inches, this robotic parakeet can be brought anywhere. Place it by the window, on your bedside table, or bring it with you on a morning stroll – the robotic bird will be happy to come and chirp alongside its owner.
When it comes to robotic pets that are low-maintenance, you can’t go wrong with a cat. This is why we have another Original Petzzz in our lineup, this time in the form of an affectionate orange tabby.
Made with synthetic and hypoallergenic fur, the Original Petzzz Orange Tabby makes the perfect furry friend for people of all ages. At 10”L x 7.5″W x 3.5″H, this is one of the robotic pets that looks and feels like the real thing, thanks to its large size and soft material.
Seniors are sure to love the new connections they can make with such lovable and easy to care for toy animals. Not only that, but the cat is designed with the patented heartbeat feature that enhances the sensory experience.
There are a wide range of companion toys that can help combat loneliness for elders in social isolation.
If you’re thinking of buying a gift beyond the usual cats and dogs, how about starting with an adorable lion plush? The Hasbro Disney Lion King Plush is a wonderful furry creature that can provide companionship and social support for your older loved one.
Simba the Lion has over a hundred sound-and-motion combinations for a rich play experience. He is able to roar, talk, and repeat lines from the Lion King movie. The repetitive sounds may be helpful in recalling memories within elderly individuals who have trouble doing so.
Even during pre-COVID times, social robots and companion animals have been popular. Back then, these robots played the same role as real puppies would in animal-assisted therapy, except the alternative is more senior citizen-friendly.
The Perfect Petzzz Chocolate Lab is our recommendation if you prefer a puppy over any other toy. The small chocolate labrador is as fluffy, playful, and loving as any other real-life pup, so we think it will be the ideal choice for aspiring pet owners of any age who wish to adopt but can’t.
The sleepy labrador comes with its own puppy bed, grooming brush, and collar tag for a more immersive experience.
If you’re aiming for a simple yet absolutely adorable buy, look no further than the Marsjoy Talking Rabbit. Yup, a talking rabbit can be a wonderful robot toy to keep you company. They’re soft and lovely, covered in an adorable synthetic fur coat. This one is even holding its very own carrot, though it can’t really chew on it.
What makes this a great companion for aging adults who miss socializing is its talk-back feature. One can choose to have the rabbit record and repeat what you say, which helps to emulate human-to-human interaction. In children, this feature can aid in developing language and communication skills.
Sadly, it doesn’t have a lot of features apart from this. You can pat its back and it will shake and chirp, but that is almost the extent of its interaction. Still, the talking feature is pretty handy for when one simply misses a listening ear or someone to talk to.
Senior citizens may find it a bit challenging to take care of real life animals. However, even real fish are easy to watch over. What more if the fish was actually a robotic fish?
The Zuru Robo Alive Fish Playset is perfect for those who may miss their own aquarium at home, or simply one who prefers the tranquility of having a little creature floundering about. The robo fish is able to swim in water and even changes color when it dives in. Put it in a small aquarium like a real fish or collect the two colors for display – the choice is up to you.
|Robot Pet for Elderly||Model Name||Price||Functionality||Quality||Total Rating||Check Price on Amazon|
|Joy For All Freckled Pup||8.5||9||8.5||9|
|Joy For All Golden Pup||9||8||9||9|
|Joy For All Silver Tabby||8.5||9||8||8.8|
|Perfect Petzzz Kitten||9||8.5||9||8.8|
|Haktoys Singing & Chirping Bird||9||8||8.5||8.5|
|Original Petzzz Orange Tabby||8.5||8.5||8.5||8.5|
|Hasbro Disney The Lion King Plush||8||8.5||9||8.5|
|Perfect Petzzz Chocolate Lab||8.3||8.3||8.3||8.3|
|Marsjoy Talking Rabbit||8.3||8.3||8.3||8.3|
|Zuru Robo Alive Fish Playset||8||8||8||8|
Finding the ideal furry friend for your aging loved ones may seem tricky at first. But with the right tips and toys, you’ll find that there are so many options to choose from.
We hope this guide has been helpful! For more information on all things robotics, stay tuned to our website.
The best robot pet will depend on each individual’s tastes and preferences. That’s why we round up not just one, but 11 of the best robot pets in the market. Take a look at them here.
As AI CEO Ted Fischer said, realism is what makes these furry companions effective. A realistic robotic dog can cost anywhere from $100 to $74,000. This wide price range is due to the wildly different features that these robotic dogs can possess. Most of our picks above are robotic animals meant for domestic use, while the more expensive ones, like Spot the Robot Dog, are mainly for heavy-duty fieldwork. If you’re looking for a simple, affordable toy to bring joy to all family members, we’ve created a guide to the best cheap robot pets of the year.
Jennie is a robot dog developed by Tombot. The robotic golden Labrador retriever is meant to be a companion pet for therapy patients, elders living with dementia, and other animal lovers who are unfortunately unable to take care of a real animal.
Currently, Jennie by Tombot is available for preorder at $450. You can find more information on Tombot’s website.