like to adopt a two-year old female". If we've heard that once,
we've heard it a thousand times. And that's ok, two-year old females
are very nice. But so are our boys and our older dogs; and by older,
we mean middle-aged (around six-years old) and up. By our standards
most Setters are considered young if they're four-years of age or less.
If you've had a Setter in the past, try to think back and remember their
exuberance until they were much older. And let's face it, for some
of us, we're not as young as we used to be! Constantly supervising
a puppy or a young dog takes a whole lot more energy now than it did when
we were fifteen or twenty, or more, years younger.
dogs, especially those who have once known it, appreciate love and attention
and quickly learn what's expected of them in their new home. Dogs
can be trained at any age. The saying, "You can't teach an old
dog new tricks", just isn't true.
of our older dogs are "easy keepers" and can move right in and
be comfortable within a short period of time. They've learned what
"no" means and how to leave the furniture, carpets, shoes, and
other chewables alone. They've been socialized and learned what it
takes to be part of a "pack" and to get along with humans and,
in most cases, other dogs, and maybe even cats. Even in cases where
some of our older dogs have not had the opportunity to learn life's lessons,
maybe they had been outside dogs with little socialization, our foster moms
and dads do a great job of jump-starting these kids into good behavior before
placement into an adoptive home. In cases where our dogs have suffered
from "shelter shock", from a chaotic shelter environment before
coming into our Rescue, our fosters are able to bring them around with tender
loving care, patience, and understanding before they move on to their new
dog is an individual who comes with their own unique set of experiences
and from varying circumstances. You should always expect an adjustment
period with any new dog. It may be a day or two, a few weeks, or a
few months depending on the personality of the dog.
are many people who are only interested in buying a puppy. By adopting
an older dog, you can make a statement about compassion and the value of
life at all ages, as well as register a protest against the indiscriminate
and inhumane breeding of dogs, whether it is for profit or to "teach
the children about birth". Just as a puppy has his whole life
still ahead of him, an older dog has the rest of his life in front of him
too. You can give that older dog the best years of his life while
at the same time bring a wonderful addition into your family. Remember,
there are no guarantees in life, or the length of life with any dog.
Quality of time together can matter a great deal more than quantity.
the story of Annie, a senior English Setter.