Considering adopting from your local shelter? While many people’s first instinct would be to head straight for the cute and cuddly puppies, it may be wise to consider adopting a senior dog. Not only are older dogs already housebroken, which helps ease the transition of having a new furry friend in your home, but they also are obedient, (generally) great with kids, and ready to settle down in their forever home. When choosing to adopt from their local shelter, many people tend to overlook these faithful companions, when, in fact, the decision typically comes with an abundance of rewards and benefits.
They’re Calmer than the Average Puppy
Think about buying a puppy as having another baby in the house. A puppy needs constant care, watch, and attention, which can be very time consuming and exhausting. Even when they have grown out of that initial puppy stage, their energy level matches any rambunctious two-year-old for the first few years.
If you would like to add a furry friend without around-the-clock care, consider adopting an older dog. Dogs that are seven years or older tend to be less hyperactive, while still providing the same amount of love and affection to any household.
You Save a Life
When most families adopt a dog, they go straight for the toy-sized pooch, overlooking the obedient and calm senior ones. When a shelter has too many dogs up for adoption, the older dogs are generally euthanized first since they are less in demand. Adopting a senior dog will give these pets a second chance at life with a loving family.
There are several reasons a senior dog could have been put up for adoption, which oftentimes has nothing to do with the personality of the dog itself. More than likely, an older dog has already had experience with families and just wants to be a companion to any person willing to take them in.
Luckily many senior dogs have already lived in a household and are trained with basic home rules. On the other hand, trying to train a puppy can be quite the challenge. From potty training, to preventing them from chewing household items, to helping them stay out of the neighbor’s freshly groomed flower box, you certainly will have your hands full.
With an older dog, you won’t have to worry about your white carpets getting stained by an unfortunate “accident” or having your favorite pair of shoes mistaken for a chew toy. Older dogs can adapt to new environments more easily than a puppy, considering he or she probably already has basic home and human interaction. Contrary to belief, you actually CAN train an old dog new tricks. In fact, senior dogs have a longer attention span which means they can learn a game of fetch faster than the average puppy.
You Save Money
Although most people prefer to adopt younger dogs, those big puppy eyes come at a pretty penny. Since puppies are in such high demand, they typically cost more than an adult or senior dog before you bring them home. Even if you get a puppy from a shelter instead of a pet shop, it most likely will need to be vaccinated, fixed, and will have adoption fees attached. However, most shelters will lower the vaccination and adoption fees for older dogs to provide extra incentive for adoption.
There Are No Surprises
When adopting a puppy, there can be a lot of uncertainty about what kind of dog it will turn into someday. For example, maybe you want to know how big your dog will be when fully grown or what type of personality they will have in their old age. When you adopt an older dog, you won’t have to worry about this kind of uncertainty. You can look for a medium size dog that loves to play fetch and get exactly that. Or, maybe you prefer a companion that likes to spend lazy afternoons relaxing or napping on the couch. Either way, adopting an older dog allows you to find your perfect match.
Before you decide to adopt, consider the benefits of having a senior dog. Many of these older pups will be loyal companions and perfect additions to your loving home. Senior dogs provide all the affection any canine can bring while being less work than the average puppy. Give a senior dog a second chance by giving him or her a home they truly deserve!