The Unexpected Joys of Adopting a Senior Pet

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November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month so we’re giving some much-needed spotlight to the aging animal populations in shelters across the country.

While it’s common knowledge that the baby version of any animal is excruciatingly adorable, that cuteness also requires a lot of time, patience, work, and cleaning! While the special bond we develop with our pets is definitely worth the effort, not everyone is ready or willing to make that kind of commitment.

If you find yourself identifying with this predicament, here are six solid reasons to consider making a senior pet your new best friend:

You get a fast-pass through the challenges of adolescent animals.

With senior pets, you get to bypass the deep sighs of potty training, relentlessly high energy levels and destructive chewing that often come with adolescent animals. You’re essentially given a fast-pass to the more mellow perks of having a pet such as composed, calm demeanors and low-key companionship.

Built-in lounging buddy.

With lower energy levels and a steadfast fondness for napping, senior pets will undoubtedly coax out the inner homebody and snuggler extraordinaire in you. Since plentiful sleep is known to reduce stress and increase overall productivity, this benefit is truly a win-win for all parties involved.

Two words: grey face.

Senior pets have truly paid their dues in life – they’ve probably weathered some storms and had their fair share of fun in their younger years. So they’ve definitely earned those precious grey hairs that may have started emerging on their faces. And given how incredibly cute that look can be, we’re glad they sport those graying faces like a badge of pride!

Give the gift of a happy heart and home ‘til the very end.

Senior pets end up in shelters for a variety of reasons, often times through no fault of their own. Although staff and volunteers do an incredible job making shelter stays as positive and loving as possible, nothing can come close to replacing a home and a family of their own. By adopting a senior pet, you are filling the time they have left with the happiness and love that only a home environment can provide. This is truly one of the most impactful and magnanimous ways to touch an animal’s life.

Permission granted to enjoy life in the slow lane.

Having a senior pet will force you to slow things down a little bit, which – for most people – is a welcomed change of pace. So go ahead and indulge in leisurely time with your pet and relish in the small moments of bliss, wherever you may find them together. 

Kindred souls.

Senior pets, like the rest of us, have weathered a variety of experiences in life. And yet, their propensity to love and trust is as strong as ever. Despite past hardships and frustrations, they greet each day with ceaseless gratitude and optimism. We could all benefit tremendously from taking a chapter out of the book on animal resilience.

While you read these very words, thousands of senior pets are entering shelters across the country. Each one of them is patiently waiting for someone like you. To see what senior pets are awaiting new homes in San Diego, please visit San Diego Humane Society’s website.




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