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Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2013
Adopt A Senior PetPosted Wednesday, November 23, 2011, at 9:45 PM
Adult and Senior Dogs Are Already Emotionally Mature
Puppies turn into adolescents at lightning speed. That babyish furball you bring home will turn all legs, ears, nose, and energy in another four months. Adolescence in dogs begins at six months and lasts until anywhere from eighteen months up to thirty-six months, depending on the breed. Small dogs tend to mature physically more quickly than big dogs do, but all dogs are quite immature mentally and emotionally until they are at least two or three years old. They continue to need training, lots of exercise, and ongoing socialization throughout this developmental period.
Adult and Senior Dogs Are Great for First-Time Dog Parents
If this is your first dog, or if you cannot devote the time necessary to train, socialize, and exercise a young or adolescent puppy properly, an adult dog could be a better option for you. If you're not sure, talk to people who are currently raising puppies or have done so recently to get a realistic picture of what it's like. If dealing with puppy pee on the carpet and needle-sharp teeth in your toes for months on end sounds like too much chaos for your taste, adopt an adult.
You Know What You're Getting with an Adult or Senior Dog
When you choose an adult dog, you have a pretty good idea what you're getting. You can see her physical traits and get some idea of her basic temperament, even though dogs in shelters and dogs newly in rescue foster homes may not always show their true personality right away. Still, with the guidelines we offer you later in this book, you can select a behaviorally sound dog who will improve and blossom once settled into your loving home.
Adult and Senior Dogs Will Love You as Much as a Puppy
If you are concerned that an older dog won't bond to you, don't be. Dogs are remarkably resilient and open-hearted. Some completely overcome their pasts in a matter of days; others may take a few weeks or months, and a few will carry a little baggage for even longer than that. Working with your adopted dog to help her overcome any hurdles necessary to enjoy her new life can be an incredibly rewarding experience -- and result in a long-term, loving relationship
If you are planning on adding a new pet to your family, please consider adopting rather than buying. There are lots of great animals out there including Lily.
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Kimberly is avid companion animal welfare advocate. She helps to educate the community on animal issues relevant to this area and is involved in organizing the efforts of others who have the same passion.