Guest blog by Paris Permenter and John Bigley of DogTipper
Is Adopt a Senior Pet Month inspiring you to adopt a senior dog? If so—or if your dog is reaching senior status—you’ll find that many dogs enjoy spending their retirement years just like we humans do: on the road!
We enjoy traveling with our rescue dogs, Irie and Tiki, now six years old, and intend to continue traveling with them as they mature. Healthy senior dogs can enjoy an active lifestyle that includes exploring new destinations.
Regardless of your dog’s age, you’ll want to do plenty of planning to keep your dog comfortable and safe. Preparations we always take include:
Bringing the comforts of home. A cushioned dog bed is especially important for older dogs to keep pressure off of joints as they ride.
Packing for success. Tummy troubles are no fun on the road. We help avoid stomach stress by packing our dogs’ usual food and treats.
Planning, not over-planning. We plan hotel stays and attraction stops, but we don’t try to stick too closely to a timetable. It’s important to leave plenty of time for frequent bathroom breaks, especially for seniors, and for walks to just sniff around and enjoy the new destination.
Preparing for problems. We pack a list of veterinarians along our route and at our destination. We plan for more routine issues including potty accidents. Along with paper towels and waste bags, we carry a urine remover like Rug Doctor Urine Eliminator™. (Rug Doctor also supports the ASPCA!) Thanks to quick cleanups, we’ve never lost a pet deposit on a hotel stay.
Perhaps the best preparation we make is to slow down and anticipate the pleasures of traveling with our canines. After all, taking time to stop and sniff the roses is what travel’s all about—regardless of our age.
Paris Permenter and John Bigley are the publishers of the award-winning DogTipper.com. The authors of 32 pet and travel books explored the Lone Star State with their dogs Irie and Tiki to fetch dog-friendly destinations for their latest book: DogTipper’s Texas with Dogs. Follow Paris and John on Twitter.
Animal shelters provide an invaluable service for animals in need, providing them with food, shelter, medical care and love. Many shelters operate with limited resources, doing their best to care for a population of needy animals that almost seems endless.
National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week was created to honor the hardworking staff and volunteers who spend their lives helping homeless pets and inspire pet lovers to get involved with their local shelter or rescue. Need some ideas of how you can help? Here are a few of our favorites!
Volunteer your time. Socializing shelter pets helps them become better equipped to transition from shelter life to their new homes. Spend an afternoon playing with cats or walking dogs. Many shelters need more advanced helpers to work with canines in obedience classes as well.
Organize an event. Make your local shelter a cause for celebration! Throw a themed party, set up a bake sale, or parade your pet in a dog walk and donate the proceeds to your shelter. You’ll raise awareness, meet new animal-loving friends and help homeless pets.
Go shopping or get crafty! Besides monetary donations, shelters are in constant need of basic supplies that can be found at your local grocery or discount store like food, cleaning supplies, toys and other pet care supplies. Call your shelter and ask what they need most and what brands they use before you take your shopping trip for the cause. You can also make some catnip toys to keep boredom at bay—they’re easy to make and kid-friendly!
Every day we post photos of cats and dogs on our blog who are looking for good homes. Like most of our readers, we wish we could bring every single one of these deserving pets home. (Sigh.) The great news is there is a much better alternative.
If you’re looking for a cat with a big personality, Teresa is the one for you! This playful feline is an ASPCA office foster cat, and she keeps the staff entertained every day with her many quirks. She loves attention and affection from her special people, and she’s ready for anything that comes her way.
Teresa would thrive in a teens-and-up home without other cats. To ensure her optimal urinary health, she’ll need her new family to provide her with prescription food. Our Adoptions team can talk you through Teresa’s care routine. Adopt Teresa today!
Teresais available for adoption at the ASPCA Adoption Center. If you are interested in adopting please call our Adoptions department in New York City at (212) 876-7700, ext. 4900. To learn more about Teresa, please visit her page.
November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month, and we think it’s the perfect time to consider bringing a special, older animal companion into your life. After all, what could be more in the spirit of the season than giving an older adoptable a new home for the holidays? Adopt now, and they’ll be all settled in and part of the family by the time you’re decorating your tree or lighting the menorah!
As you know, shelters are full of animals of all shapes, sizes, breeds and ages, but the older ones are typically the most difficult to place. Yes, puppies and kittens are hard to resist, but senior animals have so much love to give—plus, when you adopt an older pet, you know what you’re getting into: They’re fully grown, their personalities have developed, and many are already trained. Senior pets can be great matches for senior people and others who enjoy a less active lifestyle.
If you’re inspired to give a senior pet a chance, please visit your local shelter soon! And if you’ve already opened your heart to a golden oldie, tell us about your experience in the comments below.
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