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Old Pets Need Love, Too: November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month

Humane Society of Elmore County News

November is Adopt a Senior Pet month and these wonderful older pets certainly deserve loving homes just like any puppy, kitten or younger adult. Yes, sadly it is true that older pets have a harder time finding loving homes – especially the larger dogs that are older. We think older pets are absolutely awesome and there are many great reasons to adopt an older pet.

Just think of it – no puppy chewing, house-training, or kitten wild-antics. While we all love puppies and kittens, they are a lot of work and there will be days of pulling your hair out as they grow and learn. Older pets are typically calmer and happy to just relax and chill with their new family. BUT, don’t think that older pet cannot still play and walk/hike with you, and have a great time, as exercise is every bit as good for them as it is for us.

Many older pets have come from families, may already be housetrained, might be used to children and other pets, and are simply able to integrate into a family with ease. Thank goodness dogs and cats love so unconditionally and can be happy in a new family that loves them in return.

With senior pets, you know exactly what you’re getting – the proverbial, ‘what you see is what you get.” Senior pets’ personalities are already developed so you can tell right away if they will be a good fit for your family. Even things like their size, energy level, and health status are already established so you know exactly what to expect with your new pet.

Senior pets may already be housetrained, may know many basic commands and may have indoor manners making them an easy pet to add to the family. And older pets CAN learn new ‘tricks’ and commands. Older pets can actually be far easier to train than the youngsters since they won’t be as easily distracted, may be more focused and less easily distracted than a wild teenager.

Senior pets can be a great fit for busy families since many new pet owners underestimate the time and commitment it takes to properly train a new puppy, or all the trouble a kitten can get into. Senior pets are often happiest just hanging out so don’t require the constant attention and exercise that comes with young pets.

And before you decide what ‘senior’ is, please know that with a good diet, regular veterinary care, the luck of genetics and the love of a family, our pets can live very long lives. Many cats live to 20 years old and beyond, smaller dogs well into their late teens and bigger dogs also up into their teens so everyone’s definition of ‘senior’ might be quite different.

Finally, senior pets love just as much as young pets and perhaps even more knowing they have been rescued. Owners often notice an extra special sense of love and appreciation from their senior pet.

 As the quote says, “Blessed is the person who has earned the love an old dog.”