At the Pawfest event here in Largo, FL we meet a wonderful lady named Fran. She volunteers with the Pinellas County Animal Services for a program called Senior-to-Senior.
Tragically as the shelters fill during these years of economic hardship, the number of senior pets has also increased. They are relinquished due to ill health, incontinence, other age-related issues, lack of funds, or the owner passing away. These older pets are very likely to remain in the shelter for the remainder of their life or be euthanized to make room for more adoptable animals.
This great program is trying to help these loving pets enjoy their remaining life in a happy home. It matches up a senior pet with a senior citizen. Pinellas County Animal Services is committed to placing the right pet into the right home, both in compatibility and energy level. The Senior pet lover must be over 50. The participants receive a discount on the normal adoption fee. The pet is spayed / neutered, up-to-date on vaccinations, tested for heartworms and FELV / FIV before leaving the facility.
Both the seniors benefit from these adoptions. Studies have show that pets increase the health and happiness of seniors citizens. Pets encourage the senior to take better care of themselves as they care for their new pet. Pets help lower cholesterol and blood pressure. In return the senior pet gets love and care and a place to belong. People of all ages appreciate the loyalty of an older pet, and seniors – both two and four legged have a lot of love to share.
We are happy to live with two senior dogs, and two senior cats in our household of eleven furbabies / one feather baby (who is the uber-senior citizen). We would definitely continue to adopt senior pets in the future. They have a lot of love to give, and they know how to relax and live the good life.
Thank you Fran for letting us know that there are programs like this and people who care like yourself. Call (727) 582-2600 Pinellas County Animal Services, for additional information.