At the beginning of the fall, we published several articles about the benefits of fostering and adopting senior dogs, as well as the challenges older dogs face if they have the misfortune to end up in a shelter. As it turns out, November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month, which a great opportunity to revisit the subject. To that end, I’ll be showcasing them throughout the month, relying heavily on staff-member and volunteer-foster AliCarmen Carico’s great descriptions in the Available Adult Dogs bios.
This week you’ll learn about Annie, a delightful senior dog hoping to find an adopter at Rescue Ranch.
Annie, an affectionate senior shepherd mix
I first met Annie during one of our adoption events at Hunter Orchards last month. She warmed to me immediately. She was calm, friendly and companionable, despite having come to us just a day or two before. Everything was new, but she dealt with the changes very well.
Annie was incredibly affectionate in her low-key way. I was standing in the sun taking photos, when she came over and leaned her head against my knee. I caressed her head and spoke to her. She wagged her tail in response and nuzzled my hand for more.
When I asked about her, I learned that she’d been rescued from a kill shelter. We don’t know her history or why she ended up there.
It’s true that dog owners sometimes feel they have no choice but to surrender their pet because of some drastic change in their circumstances. That being said, it’s not uncommon for senior dogs to be dumped at shelters because, now that they have years on them, they require more care. Another frequent scenario is one where the original owner passes away, or goes into care, and the extended family doesn’t want the dog.
Whatever the reason, it was a particularly cruel fate for Annie, given her age. At 10 years old, she was far less likely to find an adopter than a younger dog and was a top candidate for euthanasia. Thankfully, she came to Rescue Ranch instead.
Will you open you home to Annie, the senior rescue dog?
Like many old dogs, Annie has some physical challenges. Her skin issues may be linked to diet as well as age. Older dogs sometimes develop food intolerances or allergies. She may be partially incontinent, or perhaps she just needs better house-training. We’ll have a better sense of what she needs once we she goes to the vet for her wellness check.
Otherwise, she’s very affectionate with people. She enjoys short walks, being outdoors. She has done well with other calm dogs in the past, although she is very selective, especially with females, and might do best on her own.
As AliCarmen says in her description, “Sometimes a dog just breaks our heart, and Annie is that dog.”
Annie deserves to spend her remaining years in a warm, forever home, with humans who will care for and spend time with her. If you open your heart and home to her, she’ll fill them both with love and loyalty.