Adopting an Older Dog - Pros and Cons
Adopting an older dog from a shelter is an act of kindness that usually encourages responsible ownership. It doesn’t only dignify the life of an abandoned animal, but it’s also a way to take action against the reprehensible behaviors of the current animal market.
There are many volunteers around the world who devote part of their time and resources to the rescue and care of abandoned dogs. Their aim is to place these animals in good homes so that they can have a better life.
Adopting a dog is not about saving money — although it happens by default and so it’s definitely a perk. The objective, instead, is not to be a participant in the abusive practices at puppy mills who are the primary vendors at pet shops.
When an animal’s life is considered a business, then the consequences are pretty dreary for the health and development of their species. Luckily, our culture is beginning to become aware of this, and more and more people now turn to shelters to acquire a pet.
Adopting an older dog instead of buying it
The abandonment and mistreatment of dogs is a sad reality in pretty much every continent. The main reason for it is the lack of respect when it comes to possessing and basically enslaving animals. It gets worse when there is a profitable supply and demand market out there.
For the most part, people acquire animals without any considerations for the care, expenses, and responsibilities these might require.
Animals who are removed from their natural habitats lose their independence and become eternal babies who should be feed, hydrated, exercised, and groomed. It’s only the actions of their owners that guarantee a pet’s survival and overall well-being.
The abandonment of pets is now increasingly leading to the application of economic sanctions in many places around the world.
Stop supporting puppy mills
There are two reasons not to encourage the sale of animals and to opt for adoption:
- The purchases are made on a whim. It’s so easy to buy a puppy without thinking and without having a clue what’s involved. These kinds of businesses don’t take into account a person’s ability to offer housing or adequate care, or their ability to dedicate time and affection to the animal.
- The second reason is that, historically, many breeds are subjected to mutilation due to “aesthetics” or to fulfill functions such as fighting or working dogs. Such is the case with Pit Bulls, Cocker Spaniels, Rottweillers, Dogo Argentinos, and Dobermans, among others.
Adoption fosters awareness and respect for animal life. Its goal is to improve the quality of life of thousands of abandoned animals and give joy to animal lovers. It’s a relationship of mutual and selfless cooperation, just the way it should be.
What are the pros of adopting an older dog?
A dog becomes an adult around the age of 18 months and, currently, there are many of them up for adoption. Unfortunately, most people prefer to adopt puppies due to the myths that surround the adoption of older dogs.
The main advantages of adopting an older dog are:
- To offer them a second chance to love and be loved.
- They’ll become your best friend and guardian.
- Older dogs already have life experience and can inspire by example.
- These dogs are mature and usually get along better with other people and animals because most of them already know the basic codes of conduct.
- They have a set personality and you can select the one that best suits yours and your lifestyle.
- You don’t have to wait for them to have all of their vaccines before being able to take them out.
- These dogs won’t chew on your clothes and furniture because they’ve already teethed.
- An older dog tends to have a calm disposition and is less hyper than younger ones.
When talking about things that could go wrong when adopting an older dog, it’s all mainly about their care:
- Ask the shelter volunteers about the character of each animal you’re interested in. This will help you choose the one that best suits your home and lifestyle.
- Before deciding on an animal, try to get to know them better. Take them out for walks and spend time alone with them.
- Establish a friendship with your chosen animal before introducing it into your home. Walk them, treat them, play with them, and pet them.
- Socialize the dog properly before integrating them into your home, especially if you have other pets and children.
- Have a vet look at their vaccination records.
- Provide them with a balanced diet and a quiet home.
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