The number of homeless and abandoned Dogs is continually on the rise, with shelters filled to capacity. Young and old, small and large, mixed breeds and pedigrees, all types of animals are tossed aside like trash. It is heartbreaking to see all those big brown eyes look at everyone in desperation when seeking to adopt because statistics show that the puppy or the purebred is on the top of the list of dogs finding forever homes. However, more and more senior pets are getting a chance at a new life during their golden years because of programs like the Thulani Program in California.

The Thulani Program gave hope to Elmo, the German Shepherd

The Thulani Program is an organization that rescues German Shepherds in Northern California that are typically very ill, with a goal to provide them the best in comfort and quality of life. Dogs that seem to be terminal or of senior age often get passed over when it comes to finding a home. Elmo, an eleven-year-old graying German shepherd, came to the program in poor medical condition. His life looked grim until retired fire captain Steve Frost saw his photo and knew Elmo needed a home and lots of love to get him through his sores, fungus-ridden feet, and aging bones. Elmo is just one of many older or senior dogs at this and other similar programs and organizations caring for animals needing forever homes.

Older dogs of senior years with health issues can still find love of an owner

It has always been said that sick, disabled and senior dogs are the hardest to place, but that is changing for prospective pet owners. However, these animals do deserve to live a happy life without the confinement of a kennel or crate. The older pet often comes with some benefits such as already being housebroken, sedentary in nature and not as demanding as the young pup.

Some adopters even open their hearts to the animals that are disabled in some manner, requiring hospice and special needs. One thing all of these dogs need is unconditional love, care and the commitment of an owner, like that of Frost who now dedicates his life to Elmo. As he stated, this guy just burrowed his way into his heart.

Not all senior dogs are like Elmo. Many just have a gray muzzle but are still full of love, vitality, and devotion to a potential family. Such is the case with David Writz who adopted a ten-year-old black Lab mix named Dante. Their first meeting was an instant connection. Writz states that he cannot think about the remaining years Dante may have but the unconditional love he provides and how he can make him happy in his remaining days. Muttville is another of many organizations that adopted out about 85 hospice dogs just last year. Senior dogs are waiting in shelters and facilities across the country because the best you can do is make the rest of their days filled with love, life, and comfort.