November 14, 2012

White Dog and The White Dog Army
Wonderful World Wednesday

White Dog wants to remind everyone that November is Adopt A Senior Pet Month. Senior pets are among the hardest furred ones for which to find second chances. People are afraid to commit their hearts to a companion whose remaining time may be shorter than a puppy’s. They worry about the additional costs of vet care. They fret about the hardship of caring for an animal with arthritis or other old age infirmities. In the meantime, loving gentle mature four-leggeds with so much to still offer spend their golden days alone in shelters or worse. In the WDA view of a Wonderful World NO creature is abandoned, left to struggle without adequate food or safety or care or companionship, and we ask the Universe daily to shape a world where everyone has a home and love.

The White Dog Army has a special fervor for Seniors getting another chance because we ARE Seniors who have been given a second chance. Without White Dog’s invitation to join the WDA, Quinn would have been euthanized, Nuka shifted to yet ANOTHER foster home, Puff would have died outside in the dirt from heartworm, YoYoMa would have been PTS for being blind and aggressive, and Oso would have lost his life simply because he was too old to be adoptable. And what a loss it would have been-- for each is a treasure, a miracle on four legs that has added so much richness to all of our lives.

The White Dog Army is not unique, right now there are thousands of senior pets in need of homes for a variety of reasons, ranging from death of an owner to owner surrenders of special needs pets. And the number is growing. Being old should not be a crime that comes with a death sentence.

The ASPCA published a Top Ten Reasons to Adopt a Senior for those who need convincing:
1. What You See Is What You Get …Older dogs are open books—from the start, you’ll know important things like their full-grown size, personality and grooming requirements. All this information makes it easier to pick the right dog and forge that instant love connection that will last a lifetime. If you’re not so into surprises, an older dog is for you!
2. Easy to Train …Think you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? Hogwash! Older dogs are great at focusing on you—and on the task at hand—because they’re calmer than youngsters. Plus, all those years of experience reading humans can help them quickly figure out how to do what you’re asking.
3. Seniors are Super-Loving …One of the cool parts of our job is reading stories from people just like you who have opted to adopt. The emails we get from pet parents with senior dogs seem to all contain beautiful, heartfelt descriptions of the love these dogs give you—and those of you who adopted dogs already in their golden years told us how devoted and grateful they are. It's an instant bond that cannot be topped!
4. They’re Not a 24-7 Job …Grownup dogs don’t require the constant monitoring puppies do, leaving you with more freedom to do your own thing. If you have young children, or just value your “me time,” this is definitely a bonus.
5. They Settle in Quickly …Older dogs have been around the block and already learned what it takes to get along with others and become part of a pack. They’ll be part of the family in no time!
6. Fewer Messes …Your floors, shoes and furniture will thank you for adopting a senior pooch! Older dogs are likely to already be housetrained—and even if they’re not, they have the physical and mental abilities to pick it up really fast (unlike puppies). With their teething years far behind them, seniors also are much less likely to be destructive chewers.
7. You Won’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew …There are those who yearn for a doggie friend of their own, but hold back because they worry what might happen in their lives in the years to come. And they are wise to do so—a puppy or young dog can be anywhere from an 8- to 20-year responsibility, which is not appropriate for the very elderly or those with certain long-term future plans. Providing a loving home for a dog in her golden years is not a less serious commitment, but it can be a shorter one.
8. They Enjoy Easy Livin’ …Couch potato, know thyself! Please consider a canine retiree rather than a high-energy young dog who will run you ragged. Not that older dogs don’t require any exercise—they do—but they’re not going to need, or want, to run a marathon every day.
9. Save a Life, Be a Hero …At shelters, older dogs are often the last to be adopted and the first to be euthanized. Saving an animal’s life offers an unparalleled emotional return on your investment, and you’ll feel the rewards every day you spend together.
10. They’re CUTE! …Need we say more?

The White Dog Army asks that you consider a Senior when expanding your family…and we don’t just mean in November. We guarantee you will not be disappointed and the gratitude in those eyes that look adoringly at you every day for the rest of their lives will fill a part of your soul that never before sang. Just as important, spread the word and encourage others to consider a choice they may have otherwise overlooked.  If for no other reason, do it for the WDA, which would not exist if not for Seniors. 


KB said...

We adopted a yellow Lab (S) when he was 10 years old, and it was absolutely wonderful. I agree with you - that adopting a senior is something for everyone to consider.

We plan to do it again but the timing needs to be right for our pack. We had planned to adopt a senior when K became a senior (the reasons are complicated, having to do with our daily time constraints). Now, we'll probably wait until R is a senior unless a needy senior appears in our lives by serendipity.

Wonderful post!

Jo's World said...

I agree with point #7. I will be having my 74th birthday in a few days and I have been considering a pal for Stella. It must be an older dog. I wouldn't think of getting a young pup who would wind up in a shelter if something would happen to me. So a 8 year old or up would be fine. If it would be a little frisky, like Stella and me, it would be great!

Wonderful post!


Amber DaWeenie said...

Senior dogs are wonderful. In our pack of 10, 7 of them are 9 years and older.

Random Felines said...

There is a lovely 7 year old orange tabby boy at our shelter and it breaks mom's heart that he keeps being overlooked.

Brian said...

Senior pets are a wonderful addition to every family!!! Beautiful post gang!

haopee said...

Love seniors. I have one. Her name is Rin, she's turning 10 soon. That does count as senior, right?

Wow, WDA are ancient! LOL... with age comes wisdom!

Huggies and Cheese,


Ginger Jasper said...

The post is wonderful and so true. I always tell people that seniors have so much to offer and the rewards are so great.. I hope more take up the challenge and reap the rewards.. Hugs GJ xx