Older animals find their way to the shelter on a daily basis. Sometimes it’s because they are strays, but more often than not, it’s because the owner got bored with the old animal and decided to trade it in for a younger puppy or kitten. It’s a sad truth about our society. People only want to adopt kittens or puppies, not the countless older animals who are calm and need no training. Maybe their logic is similar to “oh I want them from when they are a baby. Older animals are aggressive and mean.” No, you’re just selfish. But if you want to be a nice person and do some good not only for your soul but the soul of another, please consider adopting an older pet.
Here are five reasons why
1. They will get euthanized.
I hate to start out the gate with death, but it’s the truth. If you truly want to save a life, adopt an older animal. Trust me, that puppy or kitten that you’re looking at will find a home. That beautiful older cat or playful older dog will get euthanized. Most people don’t adopt older animals, and the shelters don’t have enough space to accommodate the amount of animals that come in every day. So the shelter has no other choice but to euthanize the ones that are older and have little to no chance of finding their forever home.
2. They don’t need training
You don’t need to train an older cat how to use the litter box. Most dogs are already trained if the shelter hasn’t entirely broken them yet. You must remember that most animals, especially dogs, are incredibly traumatized within the first few moments of being in the shelter. They live in a cage where all they can hear is barking, and all they can see is people passing them over for a puppy. But for the most part, older dogs are already trained, and they will be easier to re-train if that’s the case.
3. They are grateful
Older animals know what you did for them. For starters, kittens and puppies, for the most part, don’t know anything else aside from the shelter. However, an older animal knows what it’s like to feel loved and live in a home, then to be left to die in a cage. And since animals do have feelings, they know that you pulled them from a prison to give them a good home with love and attention. They will show you so much love that you will burst into a galaxy of stars.
4. There are no surprises
Kittens and puppies are growing, and they don’t have established personalities yet. You can have a sweet kitten that turns into a skittish cat that hates humans. Of course, it all depends on how you raise the animal. If you think that you can’t handle the amount of time and effort that goes into raising a tiny animal, then adopt an older one. There are no surprises there. With an adult cat or dog, what you see is what you get. They have established personalities and for the most part, won’t change when you bring them home. Well, they will be happier, but their temperament remains the same.
5. They are relaxed
It seems like everyone wants to adopt a kitten or a puppy, but don’t want to deal with the high energy that comes from a spritely youth. Puppies will be rambunctious and destroy your house and kittens will climb your curtains if you don’t give these babies all the care and attention they need at such a young age. However, an older cat will hang around the house and not destroy everything. Older cats will sleep wherever and request pets when necessary. Older dogs are already past the chewing and destroying everything stage. Now, they may take some time to adjust, and shelters can break dogs. But, for the most part, they don’t require the supervision a puppy or a kitten needs.
There’s nothing more rewarding than saving an older animal from their death. It’s incredibly depressing to know that these older animals that were thrown away simply for aging are living in a noisy shelter, watching kittens and puppies getting adopted while they wait for the euthanasia needle.
Luckily, there are rescues across the nation that will step up and pull these older animals so that they can live the remainder of their years in peace and happiness. So please, if you are considering adopting a pet, take a look at the older animals. One of those adult animals could be your new best friend.
After all, I adopted my first cat a week before she turned 7, and she is my life.