By Karlyn Marcy, GCHS Intern and University of Florida student
So you decided to expand your family by adding a pet, and now the next step is to plan the right fit for your family. Of course, many think that adopting a puppy may seem like the best way to go. Puppies are cute and it sounds fun to watch them grow, but training a puppy takes a lot of time, work, and patience. Senior dogs, on the other hand, offer the same amount of love, if not more, and would enjoy relaxing around the house with you. A dog is considered “senior” at the age of eight.
Senior dogs have a lot of love to give, and will thank you with cuddles and kisses for taking them home. Dogs are proven to have a therapeutic quality and they can help reduce stress while bringing an element of joy into your life.
Max is a nine-year-old, male, white Terrier/West Highland mix living in our adoption center. Max is a smaller dog that is very great with people and loves belly rubs. He is a great example of a relaxed senior dog that can complete your family because he is always smiling and will lift anyone’s spirits.
Senior dogs make great companions because they are very calm and don’t need to be trained like a puppy. Most senior dogs are housebroken, have manners, and do not chew on shoes or furniture. Many are great with all ages because they have been socialized and tolerant, and can be a perfect fit with adults and elderly because they have a similar energy and lifestyle.
Izzy is an almost eight-year-old retriever/flat-coated mix and Nails is an almost seven-year-old boxer/retriever mix. Izzy and Nails are both females and they are a bonded pair, which means they are best friends and must go to their forever home together. They are both housebroken and know commands like “sit” and “no”. Nails loves to play fetch while Izzy is more laid back, but they both love people of all ages.
When you adopt a senior dog, you know their personality right away. Doing a meet at the shelter allows you to see them out of the kennel and go on a walk to see how they walk on a leash. When you adopt a senior dog you are not likely to be surprised by their personality when you get home.
To see if one of our senior dogs is right for you, come visit the Gulf Coast Humane Society or look at the adoptable dogs on our website www.gulfcoasthumanesociety.org.