For those who are looking to visit the dog shelter, adopting a senior dog might be out of the question. Why would you adopt an older dog when you can go for hyperactive puppies or energetic middle-aged dogs? However, if you’re looking for a dog that’s a lot easier to train and will love you dearly (among plenty of other reasons), a senior dog might be a perfect fit for you.
Training a puppy takes a lot of time and effort. If you simply don’t have either, you might want to go for a senior dog. Most older dogs are already crate-trained or house-trained. They already understand basic commands. Believe me: that will save you a lot of time trying to get your dog to obey you — time that you can use for bonding with your older buddy instead!
How much energy do you want in your house?
Puppies and adult dogs have varying degrees of energy, but overall they’re pretty lively. On the other hand, senior dogs have mellowed out and won’t pester you every waking moment to play ball. These dogs are content just to have a home and someone to scratch their ears.
Are you extremely active?
If you’re looking for a jogging partner or a pet to take on the family hikes, you probably want a middle-aged, energetic dog. Older dogs still need exercise, but a walk around the block every day or throwing the ball a few times will cut it. Puppies require constant physical activity, whether it’s with toys or tussling. (More here)
Another consideration is if you have children. Some older dogs get easily irritated by the rabid noise of smaller children, while others are willing to have their tails get pulled by little kids all the time. In any case, the kids must meet the dog before they go home.
You also need to take note of regularly visiting the vet. You might also want to get health insurance, which will cover most of the medical costs.
Getting a senior dog really isn’t any different from adopting a younger dog. What matters most in the end is how much you want to bring a loving, loyal, and caring dog to your home. All three can be provided by a senior dog.