Cats I think are better pets for sick people as unlike dogs 1/ They dont require walking 2/ They are less noisy. No loud barking 3/ You can leave them for a day or two (with food and water of course) and they wont care much as they can also be solitary. 4/ Require less training then a dog (you dont have to take them to puppy school or need to socialise with other dogs and people). 5/ Many cats (not kittens) almost sleep all day (perfect for a person in bed). but if your mum doesnt like cats and she will needing to look after it sometimes, I think then a cat would be a bad idea in that case. ........ I noticed a couple of people mentioned an issue with cats waking them up. A cat can be easily trained not to do that. I always train any cats I have not to do that (thou believe me they will try that one at some point as cats just love to try to wrap their owners around their fingers or rather little paws one could say). I have like what I call the "naughty room" for cats. Some nights spent in there cause of waking me up (any meow or noise made which wakes me out.. the cat will be instantly told off and picked up and put into the naughty room for the rest of the night). They quickly stop doing that when they realise they dont get their own way from doing that, they arent stupid. My cats know they can only make noise if I have the bedroom light on and are awake. The cat I have now was quite funny about this. After getting into trouble a few times over it (3-5 times), she then tried the next night coming in and doing the faintest tiniest meow by my bed (to test me out). She's never done it since she find out it did. I dont care if the meow is faint.. do not wake me up!! (most cats can be taught to stop doing it in less then week thou I guess if one has had a cat which has always been allowed to wake you up, it could take longer for them to be taught to not do it). When she knew not to meow to wake me, she then tried the walking back and forth over me thing when I was asleep to get my attention but quickly found out not to do that either (she only tried that the once). Now she's a perfect cat (and will sleep the whole time Im sleeping and not disturb me in any way). ........ As Ema said, pet fostering can be good.. the bonus being if you get sicker you can just give the pet back. There is also the option of having dogs for very short periods for one of the agencies who home pets for people when they go away (you'd also get money for doing this!! its not bad money.. and all the pet stuff eg food etc is supplied.. well was for the couple of agencies I looked at). With that.. most places have a meet and greet to make sure the person is going to get on with the dog first and one can select what dogs you want to take care of eg small. ...... Wild pets are a good option. I made a frog pond.. and just got some tabpoles and got much joy out of that (hint if one gets a couple from a petshop, thou they cost more, they are more friendly and will come up and eat for fish food.. of cause make sure you get local frogs from a petstore if you plan to stick them in an outdoor pond). I want to set up a wild bird nesting box one day and put in it a cam so I can watch the chicks. I like to watch the birds outside my window which are attracted by my pond. ........... I currently have a couple of tabpoles inside.. its been fun watching those.. ones today finally a frog (well a wee tiny bit of tail left) but was up sitting on the rock for the first time today. (only thing with these is getting crickets unless you have a lot of suitable bugs outside). The pets I have (I foster a cat for a rescue org) and my outdoor pond and the 2 tabpoles/frog .. stop me from feeling so lonely so they are quite emotionally beneficial for me. They also give me interest in something here at home. When you are stuck at home you need to create interests in your life for a decent quality of life, having a pet can do that.