November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month.
If you are considering adopting a furry friend, why not consider a senior pet? Many senior pets stay in shelters day after day because not many families want to adopt them. However, it’s not often we consider the benefits of adopting an older pet.
If you work long hours and are away from home for most of the day, adopting a senior pet is a great thing to consider. Puppies and kittens are adorable, but if you have a busy life and limited free time, it can take a lot of energy to train them, take care of them, and keep up with their young energy. If you want a calm pet, a lap dog, or you have young children, then an “oldie but goodie” could be your perfect match.
Some great advantages to adopting a grown-up four-legged companion:
- What you see is what you get. You already know what they are going to look like and what size they will be. You can also see what their grooming requirements will be, and what their personalities will be like. Previous owners or fosters can inform you of their temperament, habits, and quirks. This kind of information will help you pick the right pet for you and your family.
- Older pets have manners. Unlike kittens and puppies, many grown-up animals have spent years living with a family and being socialized to live with humans. Many senior pets are house-trained and it takes a matter of hours – or a day or two – to help them learn the potty rules in their new home. Great adult cats are often overlooked during kitten season.
- Your shoes will be safe. Older adoptive pets are usually less destructive and well past the search-and-destroy phase.
- You can teach an old dog (or cat) new tricks. Adult dogs and cats can focus on the task at hand, are more attentive and eager to please their humans (unlike many of their much younger counterparts). This makes them the perfect candidates for learning basic commands.
- Older pets are relaxing and easier to handle. Most senior dogs and cats aren’t full of lots of energy to burn. If you have small children in the home, a mature pet makes a lot of sense. Select an adult dog who likes kids and the transition will be much easier than adding another “baby” to the family. Adult cats can jump up on a bookcase or table when kids are being kids and observe the action from above.
- Adopted senior pets are grateful for your kindness. Somehow, older dogs and cats seem to know you gave them a home and a second chance at love. If they haven’t been nurtured, cuddled, or pet in a while, they will be grateful to feel human nurturing and kindness once again.
If you are ready to open your heart and home to a lovable senior pet, stop by your local animal rescues and shelters, or use apps such as PetFinder to find the perfect pet for you.