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Adopt a Senior Dog

By Megan Gabel

November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month, and we have a few dogs that probably qualify as seniors (but shhh, don’t tell them!). There is no standard definition of “senior,” but the consensus seems to accept that, generally, a dog 7–9 years old (depending upon size) falls within this category.

Adopting an older dog has many advantages. Older dogs are no longer in the “chewing everything in sight” stage. They usually need less exercise and are less demanding of attention. Because senior pets are typically calmer and less energetic than puppies, it is easier to teach them new tricks. Senior pets are fully grown, and their personalities are developed so there are few surprises but many rewards from giving a senior pet a chance to become part of a family. They are particularly appropriate choices for an older person to adopt, someone who would love to experience the joy of pet ownership, but probably doesn’t have the energy level for a younger animal. A senior dog is ready to become your devoted companion for the rest of their lives.

SPA dogs Nellie (7), Shy (8 1/2, Mitzy (7 1/2), Susie (8 1/2), Güera (almost 10), and Buddy (almost 9) are in the “senior” category. I could extoll the virtues of each, but due to space limitations, I will focus on Nellie and Shy.

A medium-sized, slim girl, Nellie has short blond fur and a pretty face. We’re baffled at how she became an expert ball retriever since no one ever trained her to do that. She never tires of the game of going after the ball and bringing it back to you for another round, waiting for the next ball to be thrown so she can retrieve it. She is a lovely, undemanding dog who will sit quietly next to you, pressing her body against your leg. She seems like an “old soul,” and we hope that her human soulmate shows up soon to finally take her home. She would be a loyal and devoted companion who would give her all and demand very little in return.

Sweet Shy, aka “Shy Bear,” has been an SPA resident for seven years. Medium/large, Shy is affectionate, adorable and, yes, shy. She has come a long way since she was given her name. Once afraid to go for walks, she now ventures out with enthusiasm. Still nervous about cars, she is more open to making new human friends. Once she gets to know you, you will discover a loving, gentle teddy-bear dog who wags her tail in her excitement to see you and looks lovingly into your eyes. My heart swells when Shy dashes around, taking little pitter-patter steps and then runs up for some petting and sweet-talking. It would be wonderful for her to become part of a family.

Please consider adopting a senior dog. Meet them and all our adoptable cats and dogs at the SPA, Lost Pinos 7, 152-6124, any day, Monday–Saturday, 11–2.



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