Everyone loves a puppy. We get it. Puppies are super adorable. It makes sense that the default choice when adopting a new dog is to go with a younger pup. However, it may surprise you how rewarding it can be to adopt an older or senior dog. If you are thinking about adding a new pet to your family, on your next visit to the shelter or rescue group, take a moment to meet some of the older dogs looking for a home. There are more reasons to adopt a senior dog than you might realize.
Adding a senior dog to your family can be a really good choice. Older dogs tend to be extremely loyal companions, prone to affection, and have a calmer demeanor overall. Also, older dogs may not have many of the problems that can lead to stress when adopting a puppy, such as potty training or chewing and destroying everything in sight.
Any time you adopt a dog from a shelter or rescue group, you are saving a life. But that’s even more true when it comes to senior dogs. According to the ASPCA, senior dogs have a 25% adoption rate, compared to a 60% rate for younger dogs and puppies.
People often make assumptions about senior dogs, like thinking the dog was let go due to behavioral or health issues. However, older pets are not necessarily problem animals. Senior pets are often put up for adoption for a variety of different reasons. And, usually, these reasons have nothing to do with the behavior or temperament. More likely it is because their families are unable to keep them due to lifestyle changes such as a move, a new infant, or a change in marital status. Sometimes, it’s because their previous human companion passed away and there’s no one willing to take them.
Some Benefits to Adopting a Senior Dog
Most older dogs are already housebroken. It would be rare to find an adult dog that still needed to be trained to go to the bathroom outdoors. So right off the bat, your new adult dog can enter your life without any of the mess or stress that comes with a puppy that isn’t housebroken yet.
Older dogs have a calmer temperament. With age comes not only wisdom but also a more relaxed state of being for dogs. For most dogs, the older they get, the less exercise they want and the less energetic they are throughout the day.
Senior dogs have grown out of destructive puppy habits. Their teething days are long behind them. Older dogs tend to be calm and don’t have puppy energy. You can know ahead of time what their personalities are like so you have a better sense if they will be a good fit. And, they are not as destructive as puppies.
Older dogs usually require less supervision. They are content to nap at your feet while you are watching television. And, while they still need daily walks, older dogs have less energy that needs to be dispelled in order to avoid them acting out.
Keep an Eye on Heath Issues With Senior Dogs
On one hand, older dogs have fewer health surprises related to congenital conditions or early environmental factors. You’ll likely know about these when you adopt your new pet. On the other hand, any dog is going to encounter chronic health problems at some point in its life. This can mean something like arthritis or mobility issues, but it can also mean cancer, diabetes, or other conditions that are difficult to manage.
The best approach in this situation is diligence and prevention. Visit the vet almost immediately after the adoption. Go through a thorough checklist to rule out possible health issues that can impact your senior dog’s quality of life. You may be in for something minor, like a need to pull a tooth, but there could also be an underlying issue that went undiagnosed because of a lack of care.
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At Flexpet, we care about you and your pets. We want to help you keep them as healthy as possible. We have a fantastic and knowledgeable customer care team available to answer any of your questions about our joint supplement products and how they may help your dog or cat. If your dog has joint pain issues, we invite you to try Flexpet today and start your dog on the journey to playing like a pup again. Flexpet is so confident it is the best joint supplement for dogs and cats it comes with a 90-day satisfaction guarantee. Our Flexpet joint care supplements have excellent reviews on social media. You can follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, email, or by phone at 1-800-505-0575.