As we continue our Summer of Second Chances campaign at the Lee County Humane Society, we would like to share some information on the benefits of adopting a senior pet.

By choosing an older pet, whether a cat or dog, you can provide an animal in need with a second chance of having a loving forever home, while allowing the shelter to care for more pets in need.

Benefits of adopting a senior pet

As stated in an ASPCA article titled “An Older Pet May be the Perfect Pet,” senior animals are overlooked and spend a longer time waiting in shelters on average compared to younger pets. This problem persists even though senior pets often adapt more quickly to home environments when they have spent time in a home previously.

Older dogs are often easier to train than younger dogs and puppies. While many dogs are high energy and require lots of space to run, older animals may also have less demanding exercise needs than younger animals.

Additionally, because senior animals are past the teething and chewing stage experienced by many puppies, they are less likely to cause damage to shoes and furniture.

Introducing Malibu

At LCHS, we have found that many of our senior animals are ones that our fosters describe as adapting quickly to living in a home and being wonderful foster pets in general. Malibu, the longest LCHS resident, is a perfect example of a senior dog that thrives in a home environment.

Even before she went into foster, Malibu was a fantastic companion during her time as the front office dog at the shelter. When a dog begins to experience anxiety in the noisy kennel area, we will often move them behind the front desk to give them a break.

As the front office dog, Malibu was a cuddly pup who loved climbing into the lap of anybody who sat on the floor to spend time with her. She was friendly to all staff, volunteers and adopters in our front office area.

In February, Malibu had the opportunity to go into foster care. In her foster home, Malibu has thrived and proven herself to be a wonderful and laid-back companion.

Malibu’s foster shared that “Malibu is such a sweet and calm soul. She loves to lay around the house and be lazy, but also plays fetch and tug of war!”

After only a short adjustment period, Malibu started to show her full personality. Her foster mom said, “She was shy the first few days we started fostering her, but slowly came out of her shell and showed us how much of a cuddle bug she was! My friends that come and meet her always speak of how well behaved she is and are impressed by her calm demeanor.”

Malibu’s foster also shared that the dog possesses many of the qualities that first-time adopters are looking for. “She is house trained and kennel trained, so she really is an easy pet to take care of.”

Through her time at the shelter and in foster, Malibu has been fantastic with people, but will just need to be the only pet in the home.

Malibu’s adopter will also receive a beautiful painting of their new companion, created by local artist Sean Burnley. Mr. Burnley generously offered to create beautiful portraits of the two cats and two dogs that have been with us the longest.

The other dog who has a painting is Grommet, who is also a senior dog, and the two cats with portraits are Moon and Althea Gibson.

If you’re interested in adopting Malibu or any of the other adoptable animals at LCHS, please fill out an adoption application online on our website. Please give us at least 48 hours to review and approve your application.

We will reach out via email to confirm that the adoption has been approved and to set up a time to come by the shelter for a meet-and-greet. Thank you to everyone for helping us through fostering, adopting and volunteering.

Column by Kelly Daniel, volunteer coordinator with the Lee County Humane Society.

Column by Kelly Daniel, volunteer coordinator with the Lee County Humane Society.

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