For most pet owners, the lovable creatures become another member of the family, serving as constant companions.
But aging adults who can no longer care for real pets may feel deprived of the emotional benefits of interacting with an animal friend. In 2020, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine found that one-fourth of adults age 65 and older are deemed socially isolated, which can take a toll on their mental and physical health.
Ted Fischer, who stumbled into healthcare after working at toy company Hasbro, said older adults want more “play” in their lives amid the epidemic of loneliness exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. He’s now the co-founder and CEO of Ageless Innovation, which seeks to help address that need.