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MSXENOVIA's Photo MSXENOVIA Posts: 797
4/7/09 8:55 A

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We adopted BJ (the black Pug in the picture) when she was 8 years old. She just had her 13th birthday last month and honestly, I wouldn't trade the past 5 years with her for anything. She's deaf and a little arthritic, but she's such a sweetheart. Affectionate, sometimes gently playful, she's a delight to be around. I would not hesitate to adopt another senior dog.



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It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.


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VIVRANTHING's Photo VIVRANTHING Posts: 189
4/7/09 8:39 A

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my dog was 5 (ended up being actually closer to 7) when i adopted him. he was the sweetest most well behaved dog ever. he did extremely well in basic and advanced training classes. i even thought about putting him in superdogs! he got along well with the other dogs and was very affectionate. I miss him very much but even though i only had him for about 5 years, it was definitely worth it and i'm glad i was able to rescue him

plus older dogs are potty trained! (usually!)

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GREENBRIAR1 Posts: 313
4/7/09 6:06 A

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I have only had older rescued abused dogs. And they do seem to carry
issues with them. But I have accepted that that is how they are and
do my best to correct all that I can.

The reward is every baby step makes you feel so good.

The best to you on your adoption!

Edited by: GREENBRIAR1 at: 4/7/2009 (06:07)
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PENNYLYN Posts: 2
4/6/09 9:27 P

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After my mini doxie passed after 17 years. I wasn't even sure I was ready for another dog. I went to PetFinder day after day after day and nothing I saw pulled on my heart strings, UNTIL I saw Gracie.
A 3 year old Mini Aussie. I fell in love with that sweet little scared to death abused dog. So much so I went and adopted another. Riley was 7 years old and no one wanted him. He ended up being the love of my life. I lost Riley last week due to pulmonary edema. Congested heart failure. He went very quickly.
Well, here I go again, there is another Aussie in need of a home, so we are going through the adoption process now.
Follow the advice listed below and you will be fine.
I have had Gracie now for 2 1/2 years and she is a sweetie. But she has her issues. She is still scared to death of everything and has epilepsy which is being controlled with phenobarb. I am hoping in time that she will come around and realize we will not hurt her. She has progressed but very slowly and has quite aways to go yet. So try and find out any history of abuse or anything you can find out about your prospective new family member.

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SHELLYHICKEY's Photo SHELLYHICKEY Posts: 7,755
4/5/09 11:57 P

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I prefer to adopt dogs that are past puppy stage. So much easier! I always tell people that puppies are overrated.

The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president. You realize that you control your own destiny.

- Albert Ellis


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DODDSM's Photo DODDSM Posts: 3,541
3/31/09 1:55 P

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With crating, we always make sure there is nothing in the radius of the crate, that they can reach! Arwen was so thoughtful when we crated her, that she ate one of mom's boxes for a Christmas serving dish (Mom likes to store the Christmas stuff in the original contained), and Arwen at the corners out of it.

Sometimes I can't believe how resourceful they can be!


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GREENBRIAR1 Posts: 313
3/31/09 8:21 A

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I had to reply to the crate training. While I DO believe that a crate is good,
I want to tell you this story.

When I got my first rescue, I borrowed a crate and put it in the kitchen.
I only put her in it when I went to work and went to bed. She had not
been a house dog and I wanted to get her slowly use to the ways of
living in the house (she had only one accident - and did that in the
basement her first night - so things were going well).

After a few months, I came home from work and walked into the
kitchen. She had moved the crate 3 feet over to the sliding glass doors.
The bottom half of the $100. mini -blinds were ripped off the window
and pulled into her cage. Shocked is the only thing I can say I was.
My reaction . . . I looked at her and quietly said "well, that takes care of
having the crate in the kitchen" as I let her out of the crate.

She graduated to the crate in the basement, then SAFELY tied in the
basement. This is where she slipped her collar, came up through the
large cat door I have and greeted me at the door when I got home.
Nothing was damaged and so we played a game of her getting tied
(with a very loose collar) and after a week of getting greeted at the
door, she was no longer tied.

She spent the rest of her days having free run of the house (guarding
the house from the best advantage point - on the "big bed" - my bed -
while I was gone). emoticon

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FLOWERDALEJEWEL's Photo FLOWERDALEJEWEL Posts: 34,270
3/31/09 5:32 A

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Our last dog Maggs 10 yr old little terrier mix adopted us. She showed up one day after a thunderstorm and kept coming back. She already had an owner but must have decided to go get another.

She's a little sweetie, when we microchipped her we had a health check done and found out she had kidney problems brought on by high blood pressure. Looking back over the past year, even with the money we have had to spend on medications and food, I'd still take her if she showed up today. She fitted in with our other two, with the occasional kerfuffle, but is a much loved addition.

Peace and long life - Jules

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KATHYSCOLLIES's Photo KATHYSCOLLIES Posts: 16,030
3/31/09 5:04 A

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Youngster or older, we always suggest introducing them slowly and on neutral territory, if you already have other pets.

Crate training is an invaluable tool, and keeps everyone and everything safe when you are unable to supervise them personally. Obedience training with an experience reputable training is a must!

Kathy

A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

Don't cry because it is over, smile because it happened!

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BO42SOX's Photo BO42SOX Posts: 10,015
3/30/09 8:10 P

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I had a black great Dane and would adopt one in a heartbeat,he was so special,I loved him to peices
I too adopt,rescue older animals,always did

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SLGREER's Photo SLGREER Posts: 1,537
3/30/09 6:32 P

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Hailey - our dane - was returned twice - first time - she got to big (duhhh!!!) second time - she ate to much and they kept her chained outside. She has to be with one of us all the time but has actually settled down since we got her in October - Abbers our older rescue who is a loner is adjusting to her - I think she feels that Hailey is a big irritating puppy (she is 2 years old).

We thin we will adopt only older rescued danes in the future.

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GREENBRIAR1 Posts: 313
3/30/09 5:43 P

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Very good advice and great stories. Thanks for sharing everyone! emoticon

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SURENDERISNOTME's Photo SURENDERISNOTME Posts: 7,247
3/30/09 5:25 P

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My current dog Sissy is an older dog we rescued from our animal shelter. She was 5 when we rescued her. She was already spayed, had basic obedience, and settled in to our home quickly. When we first asked about her we were told that she had been adopted out before and brought back because she didn't like other dogs. We didn't have a second dog so no trouble. It didn't take long for Sissy to make friends though with many dogs that belonged to our friends. When we went on vacation 2 years ago a friend who has two dogs took care of Sissy. My friend said the 3 dogs had a good time playing together and laying around. My friends dogs have come stayed with us when she has been called out of town. So I would say that Sissy has gotten over her dislike of other dogs.

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3HOURLADY Posts: 1,622
3/30/09 5:00 P

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Thank you so much for starting this topic. I have adopted rescues several times, and I would like to share some tips that worked for me. Our local paper has a column by the Humane Society where they show pictures of dogs and cats they want to find homes for. They told me that they put down animals within 10 days that they know will be problems, and they like to keep and advertise the ones that they know are stable and trainable for at least a month or so. They don't like putting down good pets, so they bend over backwards to find homes for the best ones. They obedience train them, spay and neuter them, and chip them when they are adopted. I have gotten excellent pets by this method.

We have had some real pills, where creepy behavior surfaced after a few months, and we had to turn the dogs back in. I was at the pet shop, and a lady couldn't keep her female dog, so she asked me to take the pup. It ended up trying to kill my elderly female poodle, so we turned it into the no kill shelter. They said they would place it as an only dog. Generally the bad fits had to do with us having too many dogs, and there were rivalry issues between two females or two males. So we try to keep the dog population here at no more than 3 dogs, very low aggression breeds, since that works for us. I hope this helps you find a good match when you go to find your next pet.



SOAPNUT's Photo SOAPNUT Posts: 9,741
3/30/09 2:26 P

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Petfinder on-line was the place where we found our big dog and he was 3, not all that "older" but still being a Collie mix was stubborn. He did have his issues and so we got our second dog, which initally was not the plan. He has helped the first dog to be a dog again. They have learned from each other. You can so teach an old dog new tricks. The second dog we adopted just a short time later, was more of a pup than first thought. They are wonderful and we are so glad to have them. Our previous dog lived to be almost 16 with no serious health problems until his last month or so. He was adopted by us when he was almost 5 years old and we enjoyed him for 11. So you just never know. Take a chance on an older animal. And really the puppy stage is so very short and so much work. You don't have to raise an animal from a baby for it to bond with you. Good luck let your heart lead you.

All journey's begin with a single step and then your dogs make you go faster. Your cats can make you run fast too sometimes.



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DODDSM's Photo DODDSM Posts: 3,541
3/30/09 1:56 P

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We also always suggest if someone is taking an older dog from us that they take 1-2 weeks trial period to see how the dog is adjusting.

We suggest that if they have another dog, to never leave the new/old dog unattended if an adult can't supervise - this way if there are going to be little issues break out you know who started it, and hopefully why, so that we can work with the people who took the dog and see if it is something that can be fixed.

The other problem with adopting an older dog is you are getting a dog that probably already has issues, say with a dog who has learned that they can be a constant barker - this can get annoying...

I think its great adopting an older dog, especially since people always want puppies...Especially with tough economic times, we are hearing of breeders in Canada that are having to downsize their dogs. You could if you wanted a registered dog also contact a breeder and see if they have any older/retired dogs that they are looking to place.


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PEDIPOD's Photo PEDIPOD SparkPoints: (25,243)
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3/30/09 1:45 P

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Two older border collie brothers adopted me at a shelter and are the great blessings of my life, now that the kids are out. They love each other and we couldn't love them more. Trouble will be that we won't get the usual 11 years to love them. That part always stinks... Can't walk them, though -- speed demons don't heel.


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SMACHEL19's Photo SMACHEL19 Posts: 420
3/30/09 12:15 P

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Wow! That's a great story. I love happy endings like that. We don't have any specific things like that that we are looking for, just the right look and feel for us. Mostly we just want it to get along with our other pets and not have any serious trauma issues that can't be worked through. Well that and be perfect, lol.

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3/30/09 12:13 P

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Satan's Spawn? lol that is too funny!

But, I know what you mean, I have had a few here that I was sure were possessed by demons.

CORNELIA1107's Photo CORNELIA1107 Posts: 1,774
3/30/09 12:11 P

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The best dog I ever had was a mature dog from the SPCA. He was the best trained and kindest, sweetest dog. He was a cocker spaniel and when he passed I got a cocker spaniel puppy who was Satan's spawn. LOL

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3/30/09 11:25 A

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I hope it helps, and good luck on your search for the right dog for you!

Last year, I had a lady email me, looking for a dog that would guard, and be safe around her organic goose gaggle.

A pyrenees was posted not far from this woman as available. The owners had left their farm, and left the dog, a cat, and a rooster. The lady just wasn't sure if she should get the dog or not. She sent me the photo that the rescue had sent to her, and the photo showed the dog lying down, with the cat between her front paws, and the rooster standing on the dog's back.

I told her that her search was over...if this dog allowed the rooster to roost on her, she could easily be acclimated to geese.

She got the dog, the cat, AND the rooster and the dog has been the perfect guardian and companion for her geese, keeping the coyotes and fox from stealing them!

SMACHEL19's Photo SMACHEL19 Posts: 420
3/30/09 11:18 A

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Thanks. That's great info. Hubby and I were thinking about getting a dog that was maybe a little older, we still want it young but past the puppy pooping all over the place stage, lol. And we were worried about how to get a good one. I will use your advice.

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3/30/09 10:44 A

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Someone asked me about tips on how to choose a mature dog, and here are some of my thoughts on the subject....

When choosing an older or mature dog as a pet, you need to carefully consider several things and ask many questions.

Has the dog presented any issues while in the shelter or foster home. (some (but not all) rescues need to move dogs quickly to make room for others, and may not always tell the whole story) Let the person talk about the dog, and listen carefully so that you can then ask direct questions about what you have heard.

How does the dog act around children? Other animals? Other dogs? Is this dog nervous, shy, boisterous or pushy?

You also need to be prepared for the dog to exhibit new issues once you get it home. If it bonds quickly to you, you may see seperation anxiety issues. Be prepared to work though those issues.

Ask if you can take the dog for a walk, so that you can watch the dog and see how it reacts to different situations. Raise your voice, in conversation, and see how the dog reacts. Does it show too much interest and pull towards other dogs when you walk it? Is this interest a happy, I want to meet you and sniff butts interest, or is it a "I want to tear your head off" interest. Evaluate carefully.

Ask the shelter to offer the dog some food and study how the dog reacts if you move closer to it while it is eating. How does the dog react when approached by a child? Do loud noises that children make, make this dog nervous or happy and willing to play?

Be prepared to take the newest member of the family to some obedience classes. This is a good way to bond with your new pooch and gain the trust of the dog.

Many rescue dogs need to have time to come to trust you. If you aren't sure of what the dog has gone through, take the time to let the dog tell you in his own way. He will, if you watch and pay attention.

This is not a proof positive way of choosing a dog, but it is a bit of info to give you a small guide as you consider different dogs for adoption.

Read up on the breed that you are considering and understand what the dogs were originally bred for. Pay careful attention to the breed description about attitudes.

But, most important, be prepared to love your new dog and be loved back by a creature that is likely just greatful for being brought into a home that loves him regardless!

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