When Lisa and I adopted Bo, 15 years ago, he was about 11 months old. Eight years later we adopted Copper, she was around 6 months. It wasn’t so much that we set out to adopt younger dogs, it just happened.
We recently added another member into our family, Logan, who is a 5 five year old Bernese Mountain dog rescue.
Logan has taught us how much joy adopting an older dog can bring. Being an abused dog from a puppy mill he missed out on all the fun things a normal dog would experience. Everything is new to him; running, playing, taking walks, being loved.
The first time Logan wagged his tail I think Lisa and I must have stood around grinning for about an hour. Originally, when we were looking to adopt a Berner rescue, I admit, we were looking for a dog no older than two. One of the people from BARC mentioned Logan to us, that was when we started to consider adopting an older dog.
We knew that there will always be people to adopt the puppies, everyone loves a puppy, but the older ones ofter get left behind. People are afraid they’re to set in their ways or that they won’t be around that long.
I think when older dogs are adopted they are so appreciative because they sense how lucky they are, they have so much love to give. The fact is that no one knows how much time we’re going to get with our dog, some die young while others live to a ripe old age. Life offers no guarantees, sometimes you just have to take a chance..
The following is from an article posted in the L.A. Times.
We got the scoop on two great senior dogs in the West L.A. shelter from shelter volunteer Mirja Bishop. We’ll let Mirja take it from here:
Holly, ID# A0940982, has been at the West L.A. shelter since May. She’s already spayed and is listed as a German Shepherd mix.
Jessica, ID# A0941207, has been at the West L.A. shelter since May. She’s already spayed and is listed as a German Shepherd mix.
Holly is 11 years old; Jessica is listed as 10, but she behaves like a much younger dog. They’re reportedly mother and daughter — you have to look closely to tell one from the other, but Holly does have a few gray hairs on her muzzle and she’s a little slower and more deliberate than Jessica. They have always been housed together and they are deeply devoted to one another.
Recently another volunteer and I bathed the girls in preparation for a mobile dog adoption event (lifting them into the wash basin was quite a challenge). Both were apprehensive, but their sweet dispositions (and a few treats) allowed the baths to go off without a hitch!
When bath time was over, we took Holly and Jessica to a play area so they could romp and chase each other around on the grass. (Holly still acts like a mom and tried to groom her daughter, despite the look of protest on Jessica’s face. The look clearly said, “Mom, don’t embarrass me!”)
They played with such wild abandon that all I could do was smile and shout, ‘Go, girls, go!’ What a joy it was to see them running freely, two beautiful dogs enjoying some well-deserved playtime.
It’s hard to understand why they have not been adopted to date; it probably points out a sad reality, that people do not want older dogs. How sad, because these dogs have so much love and loyalty to give to some lucky person! We hope that someone out there will fall in love with the two of them — they have spent their lives together and to separate them now would be truly sad.
Holly and Jessica are just a few of the many older dogs that are housed in our local shelters. Senior pets have so much love and loyalty to offer and ask for nothing more than a forever home where they can curl up and feel safe and loved again.
This mother-daughter team is available now at the West L.A. shelter, located at 11361 West Pico Blvd. (near the intersection of Pico and Sawtelle). You can inquire further about them (or any of the other dogs in the shelter) by calling 888-4LAPET1 with the ID numbers listed here.
If anyone lives around the L.A. area and is looking for love, I know where you might want to start.