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Adopting A Dog? 3 Reasons To Consider A Senior Dog

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If you're thinking of adopting a dog, there's a good chance that the pet that you're imagining is a small and cuddly puppy. However, there are some good reasons why you may want to consider adopting an older dog instead. Take a look at some of the reasons why a senior dog might be the right pet for you.

Older Dogs Are Less Demanding

Any potential pet owner should be willing to put in the time, money, and energy that it takes to take care of that pet. However, some pets require less time, money, and energy than others. An exuberant puppy needs leash-training and paper training. It will likely need to be spayed or neutered. A puppy also needs plenty of exercise, and until the puppy gets its adult teeth, you'll probably sacrifice some furniture or shoes to your puppy's chewing.

Older dogs that need to be adopted are often already trained, and many are also already spayed or neutered, so you may be able to avoid this expense. And while older dogs still need walks and exercise, with their puppy days behind them, many are a lot less active, and certainly less likely to be destructive. Honestly evaluate the amount of time and energy you have. If the extra demands of a puppy are going to be a hardship for you, then an older dog may be a better fit for your lifestyle.

You Know What You're Getting

Just like human children, it can be hard to look at a puppy and tell exactly what it's going to be like when it grows up. Will it grow so large that the space you have won't be adequate? What kind of temperament will the dog have when it grows up?

With an older dog, you know what you're getting. You'll be able to judge whether the dog is the right size for your home and if the dog's personality meshes well with yours.

You'll Save A Life

Senior dogs are adopted less often than puppies, so they're more likely to be euthanized in an animal shelter than a puppy would be. By choosing to adopt a senior dog, you're rescuing an animal that deserves a loving home and a long life.

Don't assume that an older dog in need of adoption is necessarily a "problem dog" – often these animals wind up without a home because of circumstances that have nothing to do with the dog. For example, they may have lived with a family that moved to a rental home that didn't allow pets or fell into financial hardship and couldn't afford to care for the dog. It's unfair that these dogs often face euthanasia, and you're in a position to help them.

In many cases, a senior dog can be a better family pet or companion animal than a puppy. Spend some time visiting senior dogs as well as puppies in your local pet adoption center, such as Pilot Knob Animal Hospital, and you may find that one of the older dogs is the ideal furry friend for you.