When is a pet considered a senior citizen?
You may find it surprising, but a pet is considered to be senior when they are over the age of 7, as this is generally the age when most pets start to slow down a little. It’s also the age when they become much less likely to be adopted from shelters or rescues. We want to raise awareness of the importance of continuing to give senior pets a real chance at a normal life.
Here are five great reasons why you should adopt a senior pet!
1) They have already developed their personality!
What you see is what you get. There will not be any secrets when you get a senior pet. Their personality is set in stone, so you know who you’re taking home. These pets have had years to become who they are. They know what they like and they will surely let you know! They are much wiser than the puppy barking in the cage to their left and have better manners too.
2) They’re perfect for people who live their lives at a slower pace!
Do you love to kick back and relax? Well so do these guys. They will nap with you any time of the day if you ask nicely, and might even spend time meditating with you. Senior pets can be very therapeutic, especially for people that suffer from anxiety and depression. They also usually require less monitoring as they generally don’t get into everything the way puppies and kittens do!
3) They will be extremely thankful to finally have a forever home with you!
Senior pets may have been bounced between different homes before ending up with you. Who knows what they have been through at their age? Imagine how traumatic this would have been for them and how life-changing being in a secure and safe home is. They will now experience a stability that they have never known. They will always remember how lucky they are and will show you that they appreciate you with their endless amounts of love!
4) It is so rewarding to make their life amazing in their retirement years!
Adopting a senior pet truly does create a bond like no other. You are asking a pet that has been through a strenuous and unpredictable life to trust a stranger. This can sometimes be a long drawn out process, but the trust and love you end up with are worth it. It is beyond fulfilling to give a senior pet a second chance at life; it’s such a great feeling when you finally see the moment they are able to take a breath and just rely on you.
5) They are often overlooked! They may look hesitant or scared.
They may not be happy jumping with excitement at the front of their cage or barking/meowing with glee. They might be sitting in the back of the cage turned away from you. It’s easy to walk by a quiet senior pet and pick the one that warms up to you right away but remember, the pets that warm up to you right away are the ones that get adopted right away. A senior pet’s need for a home is much more urgent than a puppy or kitten that will certainly be adopted within a couple of days of arriving at a shelter. Give a senior pet a chance to show you that they are worth it too!
Adopting a senior pet takes extreme patience and kindness. It requires a special person to open up their heart and put in the necessary work and time to connect with them and gain their trust after so many have broken it in the past. Not only are you saving a life that may have been overlooked; you’re adding a precious being to yours. Caring for senior pets provides you with a sense of fulfillment, tranquility, and joy that is simply irreplaceable.
Our Client Care Rep Nicole wrote this article and feels passionate about the rewards of bringing a senior pet into your home. She’s pictured above with her dog, Banana. Nicole adopted Banana when Banana was 13, and she’ll be 17 on May 10th.