Did you know, November Is National Adopt-A-Senior-Pet Month? Senior dogs are often overlooked at the shelter and rescues, well, simply because they are “old”. But I’m here to tell you adopting a senior dog has some awesome advantages. By far, many more advantages than disadvantages!
Our first foster dog was a 10-year-old black lab named Silla (pictured above). She was a senior dog that was an owner surrender. She did nothing wrong, other than get old and not get along with the new dogs in the house… I won’t get into all things that are wrong with that statement… but I will tell you, Silla was a sweet, loving, laid back lab.
It took almost 5 months for Silla to be adopted. So many times, we wanted to adopt her ourselves… you can read her full story here.
11 advantages and why adopting a senior dog is a perfect choice:
- You skip the puppy phase of potty training
- No chewing on your shoes or furniture like a puppy will
- You skip the “teenager” phase when your 9-18-month-old dog decides he doesn’t want to listen to you anymore.
- A senior dog is most likely more mellow, so less exercise.
- Senior dogs are more likely to want to curl up on the couch and read a book than running zoomies around the backyard.
- A senior dog has so much love to give
- A senior dog is most likely already trained
- If you have young kids, a senior dog is perfect for you! You won’t have to worry about puppy nipping, or knocking your toddler over.
- A senior dogs personality is already formed, so you know what you are getting into right from the start.
- Senior dogs are great for first-time dog owners. Since senior dogs are usually much easier to take care of then a puppy or young dog, it will allow you to ease into becoming a dog owner, learning along the way.
- Senior dogs are great for someone that works 8 hours a day because they need less exercise.
Two disadvantages of adopting a senior dog:
- You won’t have 15 years with a senior dog. So we all know, dogs typically live 10-15 years. Some live shorter, some live longer… I just heard a story on Facebook about a dog that lived into his 30’s! Can you believe it?
- You may or may not encounter some extra vet bills. As our pets age, they can get sick easier, which means you may have to take him in to get checked out. I’m not going to lie here it can get expensive. When our dog JJ got sick, he needed blood tests, an ultrasound and more tests before passing away 6 months later.
You are truly saving a life when you adopt a senior dog since they don’t get adopted as quickly as a puppy… the senior dog really needs you!
When you are ready to adopt a senior dog or any dog, Rescue Dogs 101 has many resources to help you in your journey. Take a look at our adopt page and browse all the articles that are available.
Get your free PDF copy of the 3-3-3 rule poster
along with other invaluable adoption resources in our Rescue Dogs 101 From Rescue to Home – Your Survival Checklist.