8 reasons to adopt a senior dog

Senior dogs are seriously experienced in the art of friendship ...

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LAST UPDATED: 13 May 2016

No dog wants to end up homeless — after all, sitting in a cage at a pound is hardly anyone’s idea of a good time. Tragically, the dogs who wait the longest to be chosen are often the ones with the least time to waste. Next time you think of extending your canine family, here are a few reasons why you should consider sharing your life with a senior dog:

Because there’s still a puppy in there somewhere!

Sure, an older dog might be a little slower than the young whippersnappers but even the most elderly dog will have ‘puppy moments’ — expressions of fun-loving play that are so joyful, they will make anyone see right past the grey hairs!

Because they’re the last to be chosen.

Adoption fees for older dogs are often significantly reduced, because these dogs wait so long to find homes. You can use the money you save to splurge on some great new dog toys to help welcome your new friend into your home (and encourage the puppy within!)

Because the hard work is often already done for you.

Most older dogs are already house-trained, know basic commands, and are typically less destructive than puppies (they’re well past the ‘chewing’ stage!)

Because old dogs don’t belong in a pound.

Older dogs can become easily disorientated and anxious in pounds and shelters. Tragically, many older dogs have ended up there after their elderly best friend has passed away or moved to a nursing home — meaning these dogs have not only lost their homes, but will be suffering from the added heartbreak of losing their best — and sometimes only — friend.

Because they’re often more interested in cuddles than heaps of exercise.

So if you lead a pretty relaxed lifestyle, a senior dog could make the perfect companion to share snuggles on the couch with!

Because they’re friendship experts.

Ater all their years of being ‘man’s best friend’, older dogs have pretty much nailed the art of friendship — all they need now is an actual friend!

Because old dogs CAN learn new tricks.

They will have developed unique personalities and come with all the wisdom that a long life brings — but this doesn’t mean that they won’t adapt to a loving new home, and be eager to interact with their new best friends. A senior dog will be just as happy to show off how clever they are with proper training — just throw in an extra dash of patience and TLC (treats help too).

Because the only thing an older dog wants is someone to love them.

... and they’ll gratefully return the favour.

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Senior dogs are tragically often the last to be chosen — and the first to be euthanised.

By temporarily fostering or permanently adopting an older dog, you will not only be enriching your life — but you will be giving an old dog the chance to enjoy their golden years as all oldies should. 

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How can I help a senior dog?

  • Contact your local shelter or pound — and look for wise eyes and a greying face!
  • Head to Pet Rescue's online directory of rescue groups and get in touch with one in your area to ask if there are any older dogs who are in need of loving homes.
  • If you are unable to provide permanent adoption, becoming a foster carer is a great way to open your home to animals in need while permanent homes are found. This can be particularly important for olderdogs who become anxious in the pound environment, so by offering your home and heart to a senior dog you can provide them with the love and stability they need to be the best they can be! Find out more about foster caring here.
  • Not in a position to foster or adopt right now? Make the pledge to adopt (not shop!) when you have the chance to welcome a four-legged friend into your life.

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