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Old Dogs Need New Digs

Animal Welfare League touts advantages of mature dogs.

There is plenty of yapping, barking, meowing and an occasional chirp, all sounds destined to draw pet lovers to the Animal Welfare League in Chicago Ridge.

Now there is another reason to visit the shelter, a special on older dogs and on dogs who have already been neutered or spayed. Cats haven’t been forgotten. Cats over the age of three will be adopted out for half of the normal fee.

There’s a variety of breeds of older dogs available like West, the seven-year-old chihuahua-mix who came from an overcrowded shelter, or Tracer, the 11-year- old beagle who was left behind by his family. How about Fiona, a 10-year-old miniature Pinscher who loves to cuddle.

There are advantages to owning a senior dog, said Cory Berndt, the marketing and fundraising coordinator for the Animal Welfare League.

“Older dogs are housebroken. They know simple commands such as sit and stay. Owners do not have to go through a puppy stage where they chew everything,” said Berndt.

“Senior dogs’ personalities are developed. You know what you’re getting,” she added.

Cat lovers might find Homer, a six-year-old tabby who was found as a stray, more to their liking.

When future pet owners come to the Animal Welfare League, 10305 Southwest Highway, they will be asked to show a driver’s license, proof of address, and for those living in a condo or an apartment a lease stating pets are welcome. If other pets live in the home, an introduction between the two animals will be scheduled. The same will happen if children live in the house.

The Animal Welfare League wants to make sure everyone in the house gets along, said Berndt.

When pet owners hand over their check, $100 for senior dogs, or $36.50 for cats older than three, their pets will be spayed or neutered, up to date on all their vaccinations including rabies, micro-chipped, have a 10-day health guarantee, be provided with a collar and leash, and receive a goodie bag from Pedigree, Berndt explained.

The Animal Welfare League will also give pet owners a 30-day money back guarantee. This is a policy just begun in November, Berndt said.

There are over 25 senior dogs, such as Felix, Delores and Chewy, just waiting to be adopted. For more information about the senior dog and cat adoption special, visit The Animal Welfare League.

Michelle Mishur December 21, 2012 at 06:25 PM
This is a great program! We adopted two senior pets from AWL and they are wonderful. We wanted to save the life of an older pet and give them a second chance at a forever home. They both have the perfect amount of energy, love to go for walks and play, and are housetrained (although they initially had to learn OUR schedule, but they had their act together). They bonded to us right away, as if they knew that they were given a second chance at life. They are both very healthy and knew some basic commands when we adopted them. In fact, one of our dogs just passed his Canine Good Citizen test and was at the top of his class. We didn't have the time to deal with the challenges of a puppy and this worked out great for us. We would definitely adopt an older adult pet in the future and highly recommend it to people since there are so many older pets at shelters nowadays through no fault of their own. And, by the way, so many pets are living longer lives with good veterinary care and high quality food. They have many years of fun and play time ahead of them.

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