I am looking to adopt a dog for my family that is not too hyperactive. What things should I consider in choosing a dog that will fit my family and lifestyle?
Perfect timing on this question since November is the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and PetFinder.com’s "Adopt a Senior Pet Month". Currently, animal shelters and rescue groups across the United States are running close to, or over, capacity. There are plenty of senior pets looking for a special home to live out their golden years with. Many people find raising a puppy appealing; however, adopting older dogs is equally rewarding. Many of these animals are already trained and generally need less supervision and constant care, making them perfect for people with busy lifestyles. Adult dogs are usually less demanding that a younger one. Adult dogs do need their quality time in exercise and attention, but require less than a puppy. This allows you to choose an animal that matches your lifestyle.
With senior pets, what you see is what you get, so ask questions about behavior or health issues. When you take the dog home, the dog's current size is as big as he or she is going to get. It is important to be conscience of the nutritional requirements of your older pet. The caloric needs of your senior pet is less than a new puppy. Stay away from feeding them foods high in caloric content.
It's easy to see the benefits of adopting a senior dog, as opposed to a new puppy. If you are considering this choice, it will help to speak with a local veterinarian about organizations that they have worked, to find that special new family member. We wish you success in choosing that special new companion.
Seth Mayersohn, CVT