Companion animals and the psychological health of Alzheimer patients' caregivers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A sample of 244 persons in northern California who provided care for individuals with possible or probable Alzheimer's disease was studied to examine the effect of association with companion animals on three indices of psychological health. 124 caregivers had regular contact with pets; 120 caregivers did not. Men who were attached to dogs scored better on some measures of psychological health than did men who had no pets. Women less than 40 years old who were attached to cats scored better on some measures of psychological health than did the same-age women who had no pets. Women aged 40 to 59 years who were attached to dogs scored worse on measures of life satisfaction and depression than did the same-age women who had no pets. The data suggested a positive indirect effect on caregivers' mental health through interaction between the pet and the patient, but small strata numbers precluded definitive conclusions. Association with pets appeared to temper some of the psychological stress associated with caring for a cognitively impaired adult among young female and male caregivers but not among middle-aged female caregivers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)467-481
Number of pages15
JournalPsychological Reports
Volume78
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1996

Fingerprint

Pets
Caregivers
Psychology
Health
Dogs
Men's Health
Psychological Stress
Young Adult
Mental Health
Alzheimer Disease
Cats
Depression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Companion animals and the psychological health of Alzheimer patients' caregivers. / Fritz, Curtis L.; Farver, Thomas B; Hart, Lynette A; Kass, Philip H.

In: Psychological Reports, Vol. 78, No. 2, 04.1996, p. 467-481.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{571433ec2e57465d8da4751fb1023c14,
title = "Companion animals and the psychological health of Alzheimer patients' caregivers",
abstract = "A sample of 244 persons in northern California who provided care for individuals with possible or probable Alzheimer's disease was studied to examine the effect of association with companion animals on three indices of psychological health. 124 caregivers had regular contact with pets; 120 caregivers did not. Men who were attached to dogs scored better on some measures of psychological health than did men who had no pets. Women less than 40 years old who were attached to cats scored better on some measures of psychological health than did the same-age women who had no pets. Women aged 40 to 59 years who were attached to dogs scored worse on measures of life satisfaction and depression than did the same-age women who had no pets. The data suggested a positive indirect effect on caregivers' mental health through interaction between the pet and the patient, but small strata numbers precluded definitive conclusions. Association with pets appeared to temper some of the psychological stress associated with caring for a cognitively impaired adult among young female and male caregivers but not among middle-aged female caregivers.",
author = "Fritz, {Curtis L.} and Farver, {Thomas B} and Hart, {Lynette A} and Kass, {Philip H}",
year = "1996",
month = "4",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "78",
pages = "467--481",
journal = "Psychological Reports",
issn = "0033-2941",
publisher = "Ammons Scientific Ltd",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Companion animals and the psychological health of Alzheimer patients' caregivers

AU - Fritz, Curtis L.

AU - Farver, Thomas B

AU - Hart, Lynette A

AU - Kass, Philip H

PY - 1996/4

Y1 - 1996/4

N2 - A sample of 244 persons in northern California who provided care for individuals with possible or probable Alzheimer's disease was studied to examine the effect of association with companion animals on three indices of psychological health. 124 caregivers had regular contact with pets; 120 caregivers did not. Men who were attached to dogs scored better on some measures of psychological health than did men who had no pets. Women less than 40 years old who were attached to cats scored better on some measures of psychological health than did the same-age women who had no pets. Women aged 40 to 59 years who were attached to dogs scored worse on measures of life satisfaction and depression than did the same-age women who had no pets. The data suggested a positive indirect effect on caregivers' mental health through interaction between the pet and the patient, but small strata numbers precluded definitive conclusions. Association with pets appeared to temper some of the psychological stress associated with caring for a cognitively impaired adult among young female and male caregivers but not among middle-aged female caregivers.

AB - A sample of 244 persons in northern California who provided care for individuals with possible or probable Alzheimer's disease was studied to examine the effect of association with companion animals on three indices of psychological health. 124 caregivers had regular contact with pets; 120 caregivers did not. Men who were attached to dogs scored better on some measures of psychological health than did men who had no pets. Women less than 40 years old who were attached to cats scored better on some measures of psychological health than did the same-age women who had no pets. Women aged 40 to 59 years who were attached to dogs scored worse on measures of life satisfaction and depression than did the same-age women who had no pets. The data suggested a positive indirect effect on caregivers' mental health through interaction between the pet and the patient, but small strata numbers precluded definitive conclusions. Association with pets appeared to temper some of the psychological stress associated with caring for a cognitively impaired adult among young female and male caregivers but not among middle-aged female caregivers.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0030112906&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0030112906&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 78

SP - 467

EP - 481

JO - Psychological Reports

JF - Psychological Reports

SN - 0033-2941

IS - 2

ER -