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Adopt a Senior Pet Month 2024: When It Is & How to Participate

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on April 15, 2024 by Dogster Team

a german shepherd dog with his owner in the shelter

Adopt a Senior Pet Month 2024: When It Is & How to Participate

While most pet owners have started to adopt, not shop, most people are quicker to bring home a rescue puppy or kitten than a senior pet. These pets end up in shelters for various reasons after spending most of their lives with a family, but regrettably, they often don’t find new homes.

To raise awareness about the benefits of bringing home an older dog or cat, November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month. Learn more about Adopt a Senior Pet Month and how you can celebrate.

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What Is Adopt a Senior Pet Month?

Adopt a Senior Pet Month was created by the ASPCA1 and to remind people of the benefits of adopting older pets.2 Often, these dogs and cats end up in shelters through no fault of their own. Their owners may have passed away, fallen ill, or moved. Sometimes, senior pets are surrendered to shelters when they develop medical problems that the owners could no longer afford.

These pets have a much harder time finding homes. Prospective owners may be concerned about health problems or don’t want to bring home an older pet that may not live very long, leaving these dogs and cats spending their golden years in a shelter rather than snuggled up with a loving family.

Adopt a Pet Month reminds people of the benefits of opening their homes to seniors, including:
  • They Have Basic Training: Senior dogs are often housebroken, leash-trained, and less prone to destructive behaviors. Senior cats already know how to use a litterbox and understand home boundaries.
  • They’re More Relaxed: Senior dogs and cats are much calmer than their juvenile counterparts. They’re also less prone to significant behavioral changes that can be disruptive to your home.
  • They Need Less Supervision: Senior dogs and cats don’t need as much supervision as younger pets who are still curious and likely to get themselves into trouble.
  • They Need Less Exercise: All dogs and cats need exercise and playtime, but senior pets require less exercise than younger pets.
  • What You See Is What You Get: Older dogs and cats have their full size, personality, and temperament, so there are no surprises with problem behaviors or personality conflicts.
  • They Have a Lot of Love Left to Give: Puppies and kittens are adorable, but senior dogs and cats have just as much love to give. Senior pets can live for years after being adopted, not to mention that it’s the quality, not quantity, of the years left that matters most.

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How to Celebrate Adopt a Senior Pet Month

Want to do your part for Adopt a Senior Pet Month? Here are some ideas:

  • Share senior pets from your local shelters on Facebook and X with the hashtag #PFseniorpets to encourage adoption.
  • Post a photo of your senior pet and tell everyone why they’re the best.
  • Share senior pet Happy Tail success stories.
  • Educate others on the benefits of bringing home a senior pet.
  • Bring home a senior pet of your own.
cat at an animal shelter
Image Credit: JW Design, Shutterstock

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In Conclusion

If you have room in your heart and home, bringing home a senior dog or cat for Adopt a Senior Pet Month is the ultimate way to celebrate the holiday. These dogs and cats deserve to spend their golden years safe, comfortable, and loved. Adopting a senior pet makes a world of difference for them and you, too.

Featured Image Credit: Lena Ivanova, Shutterstock

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