I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that May is Adopt A Senior Month with most Greyhound adoption groups. A lot of groups offer discounted adoption fees and a lot of vendors send out special gifts to senior Greyhounds adopted in May. Once upon a time, Mr. Taleteller and I adopted a senior Greyhound, and our lives were never the same.
We’ll jump in the wayback machine for a few minutes and go back in time to when my husband and I had adopted our first pair of Greyhounds and wanted to do more to help as volunteers. We began fostering for a local adoption group and enjoyed seeing the dogs adapt to life as pets after retiring as athletes. The president of the adoption group lived just two blocks down the street from us and we often went down to help when a new group of hounds came in on the hauler. On that particular January night, we were supposed to pick up foster number 18. There was a blue brindle girl that we were supposed to take home, but someone there had recently lost a hound and was interested in fostering with intent. I said I didn’t mind one bit. I knew there was a senior brood who had also come in, and I said I’d take the old lady home with me. I figured she deserved a soft place to lay after having a few litters of puppies. As a matter of fact, one of those puppies was that blue brindle girl.
When that crate door opened, that little old lady dog wrapped her neck around mine and squeezed. People there who saw it commented that she was not going to leave my house. I scoffed. If we adopted a third, it would be a younger dog who could take the stress off of one of our other two in a few years. I assured them that foster number eighteen would soon make way for nineteen. There was a big adoption event, and wouldn’t you know, every dog from that haul ended up with a home — except number eighteen.
A few months later, Adopt A Senior Month came around, and since my birthday is also in May, my husband generously offered to let me pay her adoption fee if I wanted to keep her. We figured we’d give this sweet little old lady a good home for a few years and make the end of her life a comfortable one. The joke was on us. Lilac enjoyed retired life so much that she lived over half her life with us. She was over sixteen years old before she passed away. We went through a lot of ups and downs with her, and if you’re a long time reader of the blog, you know that she always got the better of me. Years later, what I still have from that experience is a lot more patience and memory of an incredibly affectionate and sweet older dog who had enough quirks to have a movie written about her.
I thought we were doing her a favor, but the truth is that we grew into much better people because of our time with her. We paid a very small adoption fee and what we got back in return was priceless. I had reservations, but I am so glad that we went ahead and did it anyway. I always feel terrible for a Greyhound who has to return to the adoption group for some reason, but when it’s a senior, I feel particularly bad for them.
Seniors are especially good candidates for several groups of people. If you’re a senior yourself, and worried that a dog might outlive you, adopting a senior Greyhound is a good option. Also, if you want to skip housebreaking a puppy as well as all the puppy mayhem that can happen, a senior Greyhound might be for you. If you live alone and want some quiet companionship, a senior Greyhound could be a good fit for you, too. Truthfully, seniors can fit into a lot of situations seamlessly and make you feel like they’ve been with you for a long time, in a relatively short time.
The long and short of it is that adopting a senior Greyhound can turn out to be one of the most enriching experiences of your life. Don’t overlook them just because you think your time together will be short. The love you will get will make you glad you gave them a chance.