November is Senior Pet Month. If you’ve been planning on adding another furry member to your family, consider a senior pet. Unfortunately, senior pets are often the most overlooked and unwanted shelter pets. According to Petfinder, 24 % of shelters and rescue groups report that senior and older pets are the hardest to adopt out. Senior pets spend 4 times longer awaiting adoption, versus younger pets. These pets spend several months, if not years, waiting for a new family, with a greater risk of euthanization. If your heart is breaking for these kind creatures, November is the perfect month to lend a helping paw.
Adopt a Senior Pet
Many shelters and rescue groups waive the adoption fee for senior pets during November. Contrary to popular belief, older cats and dogs adjust well into new homes. Since they know basic behavior cues and are previously house-trained, they require less training than a puppy or kitten would. Much like younger pets do, older pets desire your love, attention, and care. Senior pets make excellent companions for those in retirement age, due to their calm demeanor. Most importantly, adoption is a chance to provide an amazing creature with a new life outside of shelter walls.
Volunteer at a Shelter
If you cannot adopt a senior pet, you can volunteer your time at a local animal shelter. Almost all shelters have a senior population of cats and dogs who will love your company. You can play with the senior animals, take senior dogs for walks, and assist in their bathing and adoption support. In addition, you may aid in any education programs organized by your shelter targeting senior pet stigma. Since a majority of shelters have limited resources, your volunteer efforts would greatly help this honorable cause.
Donate to Senior Rescue
For those able to provide financial assistance, many reputable senior rescue groups could benefit from donations. Monetary donations take care of veterinary fees and organization costs of finding families for these animals. In addition, you may donate toys, food, supplies, etc. to any senior rescue group or local animal shelter. For example, Muttville, Young At Heart, and The Sanctuary for Senior Dogs are a few organizations dedicated to helping senior pets. Just imagine the joy on the faces of these dogs and cats when they’re matched with a loving home—you can help make that happen!