Adopting a dog can be a life-changing experience. Bringing a new, loving animal into your household can better the lives of you, your family members, and the dog. When you go to a shelter to choose a dog to adopt, don’t overlook senior dogs. A senior dog is generally put into this category when he or she reaches 7 years of age. Aging depends on the size and breed of your dog, for example small dogs mature slower and become seniors later in life than larger dogs. Animal shelters are filled with healthy, active senior dogs who need loving homes. They are in need of attention and care just as much as puppies, if not more. When you are thinking of adopting, keep these 6 reasons to adopt a senior dog in mind.
1. Older dogs come trained
Usually, senior dogs have already learned the basic commands of sit, stay, come, and down. They are also potty-trained, saving you the hassle of teaching them how to let you know when they need to go outside to use the bathroom. This can prevent the messy training period that is needed to teach a puppy. Additionally, you’ll save time and energy that you would normally need to train a younger dog.
2. Senior dogs make instant companions
Unlike a puppy who may need leash and command training, a senior dog will be ready to go on a long walk with you right away, and may be familiar with games such as fetch and frisbee. Senior dogs can make great workout partners because they are socialized and used to exercise. Additionally, they instantly become your loyal companion and nighttime snuggle buddy.
3. What you see is what you get
Older dogs are open books. Right from the start you will know their full size, their grooming requirements, as well as their temperament and personality. If you’re not into surprises, this is a great reason why an older dog is for you. You won’t have to wait to see if their temperament changes as they age or if they have a hard time learning certain tasks. Knowing this information will make it easier for you to choose the best furry friend for you and establish an instant connection that will last a lifetime.
4. Senior dogs are not “problem” dogs
It’s a widespread notion that because a dog has not been adopted before they reach their golden years, there must be something wrong with him/her for a family or person not to want them. This is just untrue. Senior dogs lose their homes for a variety of reasons, usually having nothing to do with their temperament or behavior, but more due to the fact that their owners are unable to keep them. These reasons include: allergies, death of an owner, the novelty of owning a dog wearing off, loss of a job, a move, a new baby, a change in work schedule, and various other lifestyle changes. These dogs need homes just as badly as young adoptees and make great household pets.
5. Less mess
Let’s face it, nobody likes to clean up messes! You already spend enough time cleaning your house and cleaning up after your kids. The beauty of owning a senior dog is that accidents in the house are fewer and farther in between because their house-training is already a learned task. Even if a senior dog is not house-trained, they can be easily taught because they have the mental capacity to pick up on tasks very quickly, unlike puppies. Senior dogs have also passed their teething years, therefore your furniture, shoes, and other precious household items should be safe from chewing and destruction.
6. Save a life
Generally, people are quick to adopt puppies and younger dogs, often overlooking dogs over the age of 5. Adoption shelters are overcrowded and unfortunately, older dogs are the first to be euthanized if they aren’t adopted in a timely manner. By adopting a senior dog, you are providing him or her with a better life, as well as saving it from being put down.
Adoption can change the lives of animals in desperate need of loving families, as well as provide loyal companions to you and your family. If you are considering pet adoption, keep in mind these reasons why it would be beneficial to adopt a senior dog. Adopt a dog and save a life, or let these loving dogs change your life for the better.
While adopting a senior dog can be very rewarding, there are some minor issues that can come up as well. One issue that does come up with senior dogs are the aches and pains of aging. If your senior dog is suffering from any kind of joint issues, joint supplements can help. All natural joint supplements can provide relief for inflammation, swelling, stiffness, and lameness in dogs and cats.