Loneliness now affects 1.2 million older people in the UK, leading many who are living a lonely life to develop various psychological problems. Because of this, loneliness is becoming one of the UK's most pressing issues leading dog food brand Pedigree, to come up with the Dog Dates initiative.
It is believed that pets help older adults remain physically and socially active, however, it's not always possible to have a pet. The pilot initiative in Melton Mowbray saw local dog owners being paired up with lonely people and was that successful the initiative is being rolled out nationally.
The video takes a look at how Jenny has benefited from the Dog Dates scheme. Having separated from her abusive husband and lost trust in people because of her experience, Jenny suffers from social isolation. Being matched with a local family who own a dog, has given her an opportunity to socialise not only with the family, but with other dog walkers and members of the community as she takes the family’s dog for a walk.
PEDIGREE is encouraging anyone who is interested in bringing PEDIGREE Dog Dates to their local community to register their interest at https://uk.pedigree.com/dogdates/. The initiative welcomes people over 65 interested in making new friends, as well as families and individuals with their dogs (who are always up for another walk).