4473 Barton Orleans Road Orleans, VT 05860 802-754-2228

September is National Senior Pet Health Awareness Month

small Dog with big noseJust like older people, senior pets sometimes need special care and attention. With continually improved technology, veterinarians can take a proactive approach to help maintain your older pet’s good health. Laboratory tests and health screenings can detect problems in very early stages so that treatment can be started before a disease progresses too far. Therefore, it becomes increasingly important that your pet receives regular wellness checks and physical exams with the vet of your choice. The longer a problem remains undetected, the more serious the outcome can be. Keeping your pets healthy throughout their entire life and helping them grow old gracefully are two of the best gifts you could ever give them.

Adopting a senior pet is one of the most wonderful things you can do – not only for them, but for yourself also! Sometimes it feels like society doesn’t always have a lot of respect for older things or beings. With so much emphasis on how “important” it is to have the latest car, computer, or gadget, sometimes we forget the wonderful wisdom that age can bring. Many shelter volunteers will tell you that they are completely convinced that if more people knew how amazing it is to rescue, foster and share their life with a senior pet, senior pets wouldn’t spend so much time in so many shelters. While it is true that senior dogs and cats are likely to spend less time with their human families than younger pets would, the time that they do have can easily be measured in terms of great quality. It’s a matter of quality over quantity when adopting a senior pet!

It’s also important to remember that often senior dogs and cats in shelters are there through no fault of their own. Sometimes their humans, also elderly, may have moved to a care facility that doesn’t accept pets. Or sometimes their humans may have encountered serious economic hardships and could no longer afford to care for their beloved pet, particularly an older pet with possible special needs. Sadly, we’ve all heard of cases where an older pet simply became unwanted and was left at a local shelter.

There are many advantages to adopting mature animals. You already know what they are going to look like and what size they will be. You will discover their personalities much sooner in your relationship rather than waiting through those sometimes very trying learning stages. Senior pets are much less likely to chew your favorite pair of shoes or shred your couch or curtains! Generally, senior pets in shelters are already house trained, may easily identify and acknowledge some commands, and overall behave more calmly. They often arrive in your home so well-behaved it feels a bit like they have spent their whole life with you. Seniors have just as much love to give as any younger pet!

As at many shelters, at any time of the year, PMFAS always has a number of senior dogs and cats that would love to find their own loving, caring forever home for their golden years. Visit us on petfinder.com to see our senior fur-babies. Perhaps you’ll fall in love with one and become that caring forever home!

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