Even though November is officially National Adopt a Senior Pet Month, we think that any month is a good time to welcome a senior pet into your family. The golden years are a time when life should be simple, carefree, and peaceful — a time to be surrounded by love and comfort. Sadly, for many senior cats, their reality is much different than that.
Senior cats are often overlooked in favor of younger, tiny fluffballs, and upon first impression, it’s easy to understand why: Kittens are cute and playful, characteristics that may be long gone for many geriatric cats. What people may not realize, though, is that while a senior cat may prefer nap time over playtime and tout a graying face rather than a youthful glow, one thing is certain — they still have so much love left to give. Despite the perceived drawbacks, there really are so many terrific reasons to consider adopting a senior cat, and we hope that these extraordinary stories will inspire you.
Talk about a purrfect pair! Gus Gus was surrendered to the shelter at the ripe old age of 19 when his previous owners could no longer care for him, but thankfully, he didn’t spend much time there. He was adopted by a 101-year-old woman who was saddened by the loss of her previous cat. The shelter was a bit skeptical at first, but her family offered to step up to help care for Gus Gus. They are like two peas in a pod, with Gus Gus making himself right at home and “eating like a horse.” This story just goes to show that it’s never too late to give and receive love!
Like so many senior cats that end up in shelters, Sammy’s elderly owner entered an assisted living facility and wasn’t able to bring him along. He was surrendered just before his 20th birthday. The folks at Cincinnati Animal Care decided to celebrate his upcoming birthday with a party, and once the word got out that sweet Sammy was in need of a home, he was adopted the very next day! The shelter even converted one of their rooms into “Sammy’s Senior Center” to help his friends get adopted, too!
Adopting an older pet can sometimes change our lives in ways we may never have imagined. Being able to give a second chance at life by providing a forever home to a cat that may have otherwise not had that chance is fulfilling in many ways. When Melissa, a volunteer at MSPCA, realized that senior cats are less likely to get adopted, she decided that it was time for her to bring one of these lovable pets (named Clive) home. She shared that “His main priority is simply cuddling with anyone and everyone as much as possible.” She reminds potential adopters not to overlook senior pets because they still have so much affection left to offer.
Twenty-one-year-old Tigger was abandoned at a veterinary hospital by his previous owner, and at first, the reason was unclear. When his prospective adopter Nicole learned his story, she decided that she wanted to shower him with love during the time he had left. Shortly after, she learned that he was in kidney failure and had a tumor the size of a golf ball. With some help from his veterinarian and a little TLC, Tigger’s spritely personality began to shine through despite his medical challenges. His new family created a bucket list of adventures to share with Tigger, and so far the beach has been his favorite place. Nicole hopes that Tigger’s story will inspire others to adopt an older pet, and said, “He has forever changed our hearts and will hopefully change the hearts of others when it comes to adopting older pets!”
When rescuers found Fargo, he was outside on his own, half-frozen, emaciated, and near death. Rescuers transported him to a veterinarian for care, and there the most heartwarming thing happened. They wrapped him in a blanket, and he “immediately started purring from a single gentle touch. He barely had enough strength to open his eyes, but he kept purring and wanting more love.” Fargo found himself safe in the arms of his hospice foster where he was showered with love and kindness for the rest of his days.
Senior cats can steal our hearts when we least expect it, which is exactly what happened when one family visited a local shelter planning to adopt a kitten. That’s where they met and fell in love with Dexter, a 20-year-old kitty waiting to find his forever family. Although Dexter adored everyone in his new family — even the dogs — he instantly bonded with JJ, his younger human sibling. Dexter lived two glorious years with his loving family, and in that short time, he taught them so much about love and happiness that they’ll never forget.
Even though a senior cat may be approaching the end of their life, they have an unparalleled amount of love yet to give in the time they do have left. They will touch your heart and brighten your life in ways you never thought possible. By adopting a senior cat, you can help a deserving soul find their forever home. After all, any time is the right time to save a life!
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