It doesn’t take some kind of magical imprinting with the young to bond with an animal. Baby animals do not have special abilities that allow them to be closer to or more compatible with their owners. Love and acceptance works for all ages, and animals respond in kind. Adopting older animals saves the owner stress, expense, and time!
Benefits of Adopting Older Animals
In the Beginning
A very significant number of older pets have already been spayed and neutered. Adopting them avoids the expense, time, and attention that go along with your animal’s proper recovery from the surgery.
Training your pet consumes a lot of time and is a tedious process. If it is done properly it involves constant supervision and consistent reinforcement and redirection. That headache can be avoided by adopting older pets, especially if you have a history of pet behavior. Older animals have already been through at least one program and usually have the ability adapt to new surroundings, especially if they are suitably introduced.
Ownership of mature animals comes with a history that will probably make a good foundation upon which to base the new relationship. For generic example, you can know the meaning of your animal’s behavior or a particular action, when the animal does this it means that kind of thing. It’s just a matter of the owner learning how to communicate with the animal in its language, so to speak.
The trial and error process of establishing your pet’s preferences will also take time, though not as intensely as training will. It will take days, weeks, or months for your animal to establish an action or behavior and then for you to pick up on it.
Knowing the little things about your pet like food preference, potty practices, or playtime tendencies can significantly impact the transition by introducing the familiar in an unfamiliar place. Something as straightforward as establishing a toy preference can become frustrating. A frame of reference can be very comforting and make great strides toward trust, allowing the new relationship to develop its own little idiosyncrasies.
In Between Puberty Palm Springs
Ages 6-7 are like the middle life after the crisis age for animals. They are still great exercise companions and are still very playful and would enjoy running at top speed given the space and opportunity. This period can last many years until your pet reaches senior status. If there is a comfort zone in an animal’s life, this is probably it. Middle-aged animals are too old for growing pains and too young for growing old pains; they are in the Goldilocks stage.
They’re not Dead Yet
Yes, your relationship with a senior pet logically will be shorter than longer, but these animals still have perfectly viable lives. There are great times to be had spent in the company of someone who wants you. And that you works both ways. Don’t mistake the quantity of life with the quality of it.
If you are choosing to adopt from a shelter, then you probably have some sense of rescue for an animal. If this is true, then adopting from the least-likely-to-be-adopted demographic only strengthens this purpose.