This month, the whole month, we celebrate senior pets with National Adopt a Senior Pet Month and we hope that many senior pets will find forever-loving homes.
The shelters are full of senior pets that were either homeless their whole lives or were left there by their owners because they did not know how to handle them once they reached their golden age.
And, that is very sad because senior pets are more loving than young ones and they have so much love to offer. Young animals need so much patience and training, that the senior pets don’t need from you. They just need love and daily walking.
About Senior Pet Month
A lot of our seniors have grown up with a dog, and sometimes these dogs are the seniors we love. We want to raise awareness for the relationships that senior pets build with their owners, so we encourage people to adopt elderly dogs or cats in need. Why do we care about raising awareness for elderly pets?
Although dogs and cats have shorter life expectancies than some other species, older pets bring a lot to the table. They teach us lessons and we learn from them in ways that are both big and small, including the following:
Older pets can offer adjunct lessons on understanding death. Pets can teach us about death in a number of ways. Most people know that some animals grieve when their owners die, but some animals also exhibit signs of grief.
In studies with dogs and cats, a team of professors found that animals grieved in various ways when they were separated from their owners.
The grief exhibited by these animals is similar to the way people grieve. Older pets may teach us how to deal with our own feelings about death and grieving.
The Implications of Adopting a Senior Pet
Yes, many senior pets have illnesses, but so do old people and we don’t give up on them. This means that owning a senior pet will not be cheap because they will require more veterinary visits and wellness checkups. But all the love they will give is priceless. This should not deter you from adopting a senior pet from a shelter and give it all the love you have.
Welcoming a new furry friend to your family is not easy to do, but there are a few things you should be aware of before you officially take on the responsibility.
Whether you adopt from an animal shelter or rescue, it is important that the pet had been well-socialized and has had good experiences with other people and animals. Additionally, adoption agencies typically require that pets be spayed or neutered before leaving their care.
If your new pet is an adult, bring them to a veterinarian for a checkup within the first few weeks. The vet will make sure they received all necessary vaccinations, and confirm that your pup or kitty has been spayed or neutered. They will also be able to detect signs of health issues, such as dental problems or parasites. It is best to treat the pet’s medical needs while still in the shelter environment so that they won’t scare off prospective adoptees.
Seniors have special needs, too. Make sure you are up for the challenge. Pets can live a long time (15+ years), so make sure you’re prepared to care for the pet for a long time to come.
Adopted senior pets are more grateful and all adopters say that they haven’t regretted it. Be part of the change we want to make an adoption. Adopt a senior pet today and make a little Fido happy. You will never regret it.
If you liked this article, read “Caring for Senior Pets” on our blog.
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