When people think about getting a pet, they often imagine an adorable little puppy or kitten. Generally, people equate the younger an animal is with the higher "level" of cuteness. Very few people imagine going to the shelter and picking out an older pet to bring home with them. While I must agree that both kittens and puppies are insanely adorable, this desire for younger pets often creates an issue within pounds and shelters across the United States.
This issue is the extremely disproportionate amount of older pets throughout the United States that do not have homes and often spend the entirety of their lives in a shelter, never finding their true forever home. People often think of older animals as less desirable to adopt as pets, and as horrifying as it is to think of, some people will even return their pet to shelters as they reach older age, claiming that they have become too "high maintenance."
As someone who has had their pets since they were very young, I can assure you that they do not lose their adorability in any way, I can 100% assure you they stay 100% adorable! Older pets can be just as cute, playful and loving as their younger counterparts. While they may need some extra care and may take a few extra naps, that doesn't make these lovable seniors any less of an amazing pet. Your pets will always see you as their family and will love you unconditionally, regardless of at what age you adopt them. When a pet is adopted, especially one's who have been in a shelter for a great length of time, they are often extremely grateful towards their adopters.
While most kittens and puppies will eventually end up finding a home, adult and senior pets are not always as lucky. Even those living in no-kill shelters who are definitely luckier than those who are still may end up living their entire life in a shelter full of other animals, never knowing the love of a family of their own.
Taking the time to spread the word about older pets can make a huge difference. Take the time to read about the pets that are currently living in your local shelter, share their stories on your social media and educate those close to you about the importance of caring for older pets.
So to everyone who is currently thinking of adopting a pet, don't just automatically go to the rooms full of kittens and puppies. Even if you are feeling unsure, at least take a look at the adult or senior pets that your local shelter has to offer. You never know, you may end up falling in love with one of the pets you least expect.