6 Most Dog-Friendly Senior Living Facilities in Los Angeles
Jan 11th, 2023
Retirement communities in Los Angeles, from independent living spots to assisted living, and even some memory care facilities, welcome your pets. In particular, dogs are welcome at most senior living communities and many are provisioned to make caring for your dog easy. Cats are allowed in almost all Los Angeles retirement communities. I've even seen a few birds as I've toured different communities around the metro LA area.
Rules For Dog Owners in Senior Living
There are a few rules of the road for bringing your dog, cat or bird to a senior living home in Los Angeles.
1. Care: The primary one is that the resident must be able to take care of the pet herself. That means she must be able to walk her dog, or if a cat, change the litterbox. Of course, family members may assist as long as it is not the responsibility of the community.
2. Planning: Having a Plan B is also required when allowing a pet to live in an assisted living. The senior living community will accept a pet only if there is an arrangement for who will care for the animal should the resident become unable. If there is a hospitalization, the resident's capabilities decline, or should the person pass away, the facility wants to know that they will not become responsible for the pet.
3. Appropriateness: Just like the prospective resident, dogs often go through their own in-person assessment before being admitted. Communities usually have a size restriction and evaluate dogs to make sure they are not aggressive or in other ways a hazard to the older residents in their charge.
4. Cost: A pet deposit is required at most senior living facilities. The amount varies from place to place.
Sarah's Favorite Dog-Friendly Senior Living Communities
Below is a curated sampling of what is available in Los Angeles. But, please don't make your decisions based on internet lists! You should always consult with a senior living expert like me whose job it is to know the strengths and weaknesses of the various communities and make sure you are making a wise decision. So start here, have a look at some options, then give me a call at 310-853-8282. My service is available at no charge to you.
Silverado Beverly Place, Mid-City
My absolute favorite Los Angeles dog-friendly senior living community is actually a memory care facility, Silverado Beverly Place, located in LA's mid-city neighborhood near The Grove. Silverado is unique in every aspect and truly a remarkable dementia community, but what sets them apart when it comes to dogs is that the dogs roam free, like they would in your home. Silverado believes that their dogs provide therapeutic benefits to their dementia care. While I've seen one dog on a leash, I think there are about ten others that live their lives freely, coexisting with the residents. They ride the elevators to go visit, snuggle with people in their rooms, and generally can be seen, tails wagging, in the lobby and common areas bringing joy to those around them.
Where do their dogs come from? The residents bring them. A few have been adopted from shelters. And most awesomely, if a resident passes away, they keep the dog. Because Silverado is caring for people with dementia, they do not expect the residents to be able to care for them. They do have a dog walking club, that has the benefit of getting people outside and exercising, but the community takes care of feeding, grooming, and tending to the animal's other needs.
Kingsley Manor, Hollywood
Another top retirement community for dogs is Kingsley Manor in Hollywood. This four-acre continuing care retirement community offers independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing all on one campus. Kingsley Manor has a large, beautiful green quad and about a mile of walking path circuiting the entire property. Opened in 1912, Kingsley Manor's outdoor space is lined with mature rose gardens, trees, and shrubbery. A dog care station is located by the independent living building to make cleaning up after your dog easy. I have many clients with dogs living at Kingsley Manor. As a non-profit, their value pricing combined with their great outdoor space makes this one of my favorite communities for dog owners.
The Watermark, Westwood
The Watermark at Westwood Village stands out as a dog-friendly retirement community for the facilities that have been incorporated specifically for dog owners. A gated dog run complete with a dog-washing station and dog-level water fountain shows the facility's commitment to accommodating those with furry friends. Make a left out the front door and there's a lovely residential neighborhood perfect for dog walking. Make a right, and you are smack in the middle of Westwood Village, a great place to stroll with your pooch while taking in the sights. For added green, the UCLA campus is just around the corner.
Yes, The Watermark at Westwood Village is among the priciest senior living communities in Los Angeles. But, it also is one of the most amenity-filled and its location, with Westwood shopping and dining right out the door makes it a terrific choice for those wanting to spoil themselves while they spoil their pup.
Brookdale Santa Monica Gardens, Santa Monica
Bring your pup to Brookdale Santa Monica Gardens and start each morning with a walk along the Santa Monica bluffs. Located on Second Street, two blocks from Ocean Avenue and just a few short blocks to Montana Avenue, Brookdale Santa Monica Gardens is a dog-lovers dream location.
Fairwinds, West Hills and Sunrise Studio City
There are many other retirement communities that allow dogs, too numerous to mention here. I do want to highlight two more before I end this blog, Fairwinds of West Hills and Sunrise Senior Living in Studio CIty. Fairwinds has a ton of inviting outdoor space with many ground-floor apartments that open onto nice courtyards. They also have a sizeable walking path running the circumference of the property that is just made for dog walking. This is a picture of one of the Fairwinds ladies getting ready to take her pooch for a stroll.
Similarly, the Sunrise in Studio City has an excellent walking path within the property. But what I like best about the Sunrise in Studio City is their resident dog, Kira.
Kira, Sunrise Studio City's resident dog
Kira is a large dog, eerily quiet and incredibly gentle. She has the run of the building and usually pads beside us silently when we are on tours. I always joke that Kira reminds me of one of the pet direwolfs from Game of Thrones, unusually large and intelligent, loyally staying by our sides as we tour around. She is a welcome addition to Sunrise of Studio City, belonging to everyone in the community, spreading warmth and love.
Assisted Living Locators Los Angeles owner Sarah Ordover is one of LA’s top senior living advisors. Certified in dementia care, Sarah is a trained aging specialist who holds an RCFE assisted living administrators license. Sarah thoughtfully guides families through the senior living decision-making process, helping them find the best solution for their loved ones. Call Sarah at 310-853-8282 for a consultation. Assisted Living Locators is free to clients.