The Daily Pip

Promoting rescue, adoption and second chances for dogs, cats, bunnies, and their peeps

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

2018 Year Of The (Senior) Dog

Ruby and I have decided to dedicate 2018 to senior dog (and cat) adoption. Starting next week, we will be sharing one happily-ever-after senior adoption story per month. Each post will be chock-full of feel-good inspiration, bucket lists, and second chances - and will clearly show why adopting a senior dog or cat is pretty much the best thing ever. Throughout the year I will also be actively sharing adoptable seniors on social media and raising funds for rescue organizations that support and re-home senior dogs and cats.

In Chinese astrology 2018 is the Year Of The Dog - here on The Daily Pip 2018 is the Year Of The Senior Dog!

Adopting a senior dog is a chance to rewrite their story and make the middle and ending happy. The first half of Ruby life wasn't so great, but the second half has been filled with many adventures like visiting South Dakota

Senior Dog Adoption: Rewrite The Story And Make It Happy

After Pip passed away in October 2013, several well-meaning friends and acquaintances asked if we were going to adopt a puppy. When I told them that we planned on adopting an older dog, they looked surprised and concerned. What if the dog has issues, health problems, or doesn’t live very long, they asked? 

The truth is there are no guarantees in life. Loss happens, often when we least expect it. While it's true senior dogs may not live as long, they help us live in the moment and value quality over quantity. They may have health issues and emotional scars (who doesn’t) but they also have much to teach us about forgiveness, compassion, and the beauty of imperfection.

Adopting a senior dog is a chance to rewrite their story and make the middle and ending happy. The first part of Ruby's life wasn't so great, but the second half has been filled with many adventures

Ruby's Happily-Ever-After Bucket List

We adopted Ruby in 2013 about six weeks after losing Pip. She was seven or eight at the time, making her eleven or twelve now. Adopting a senior dog is a chance to rewrite the story and make it happy - and I know we have done this for Ruby. While sharing a long life with an animal is a wonderful thing, adopting a senior dog (or cat) that may never have known kindness or love is just as amazing.

To kick off Year Of The Senior Dog, we decided to share Ruby's Happily-Ever-After Bucket List (with commentary by Ruby herself). These are just a few of the experiences and adventures she's enjoyed since being rescued and adopted. 

1. Dipped paws in the Atlantic Ocean. Unimpressed. Not a water dog. 

2. Survived multiple sleepover parties with multiple giggling 'tween girls. Sorry no photos. What happens at sleepovers stays at sleepovers. 

3. Barked at bison, antelope and other wildlife in Custer State Park, South Dakota.
All from the safety of inside the car. The bison did not bark back.

The first part of Ruby's life wasn't so great, but she was adopted as a senior dog  and the second half of her life has been filled with many adventures like being a tourist in her own town and visiting Buckingham Fountain

4. Played tourist in her own town, enjoying the sights and sounds of the Windy City. Dog friendly pubs where french fries fall from the sky (AKA the table) are the bomb. 

5. Learned to spin. Debunking the myth, once and for all, that old dogs can't learn new tricks

6. Felt the spray of Niagara Falls on her paws. It was cold and wet - more woods, less water, please. 

7. Strutted her stuff in fashion shows and dog walks for local rescues and shelters. Life is all about giving back.

Ruby was a senior when she was adopted and now lives with an adopted  bunny

8. Befriended a rabbit and served as a spokes-dog for interspecies friendship. Rabbits are even more bossypants than cats. 

9. Hiked in state parks in Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri, New York, South Dakota, and Massachusetts. Midwestern dogs prefer midwestern parks because hills are hard.

10. Served as blog muse and healer after losing Pip. They saved me, I saved them. Everything comes full circle.

Adopting a senior dog is a chance to rewrite their story and make the middle and ending happy. The first half of Ruby life wasn't so great, but the second half has been filed with many adventures

Ruby's plans for 2018 and beyond 

1. Retire in Florida. Bright colors and Florida fashion are fun. The weather in the midwest blows.

2. Conquer fear of water. Start with puddles, then rivers, then lakes 

3. Eat more cat food. A dog can dream.

4. Buy more sweaters. Some girls like shoes, I like sweaters.

5. Become more comfortable, confident and less socially awkward around other dogs. In progress.

6. Attend BlogPaws 2019 (dependent on #5)

None of these things would have even been remotely possible had she not been rescued and adopted. There are thousands of midlife and senior dogs like Ruby waiting for someone to see beyond their gray whiskers, cloudy eyes, tired limbs, and bruised hearts. Some of these animals have known loving homes but many others have not. They have much to share and when given a second chance, their gratitude and love is immense.

Adopting a senior dog is a chance to rewrite their story and make the middle and ending happy. The first half of Ruby life wasn't so great, but the second half has been filled with many adventures

2018 Year of the (Senior) Dog 

What can you do today to help senior dogs and cats rewrite their story and make the ending happy? Adopt and foster senior shelter pets, volunteer with and donate to shelters and rescues that prioritize senior pet adoption, and share adoptable seniors on social media. Don't forget to tune in next week for our very first senior special adoption post. You can read past special adoption posts here. 

We have lots planned for 2018! Stay in the loop (and don't miss a single post) by subscribing to The Daily Pip

Adopting a senior dog is a wonderful thing that allows you to rewrite the story and make the middle and ending happy


Julie said...

Sweet Ruby, you are the poster pup for adoption, young or old! I LUFFS your 'To Done' bucket list and can't wait to hear of you accomplishing your 'To Do' bucket list although I fear the loving water bit could be a bit thingy to achieve!
Loves and licky kisses
Princess Leah xxx

Brian said...

You are such an amazing beauty sweet Ruby!

Casey said...

There really are no guarantees in life. Momma adopted Cinderella as a senior and had five beautiful years with her. Jessie was just a year old when we adopted her, but thanks to her kidney issues, we're not likely to have five years with her. You can just never tell. And senior dogs know how to enjoy the good life!

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari Om
I know that as and when I get round to having another dog, it will be adopted and it will be less than a puppy! I need some dog who has been around the block (like me) and who now finds it difficult and slot to get around that block (like me) and who loves hugs and cuddles (like me)... you get the picture!!! Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xxx

Three Chatty Cats said...

Beautiful, as always! I wish more people would think like you and adopt older dogs and cats. There are so many waiting in shelters and with rescues. I love Ruby's Happily-Ever-After Bucket List!!! I also love her plans for 2018 and beyond. Buy more sweaters!

Eastside Cats said...

"Rabbits are even more bossypants than cats."

Natasha Thompson said...

What a sweet girl Ruby is! I love, love her bucket list!! We lost our senior girl Ginger in June, and while Roxy & Rico are enough to keep me on my toes, we definitely want a senior rescue for our next addition.

Sheltie Times said...

Bailey was our only puppy and as a rescue that was a surprise. We weren't looking for a puppy, but seeing him we couldn't walk away. After that experience we went looking for a dog past the puppy stage. Raising a puppy is like raising a baby. It can be wonderful, but if you have a busy life it is hard to balance.

I think with any adoption/rescue the goal is a good fit. Does the dog fit? Can you meet the dog's needs? If the fit is good age isn't the issue. If the fit is bad again young or old there is a better choice for human and dog.

Bouncing Bertie said...

Ruby, you truly are the perfect poster girl for senior dog adoption.
We so hope you get to BlogPaws 2019!

Inger said...

What a lovely thought to dedicate this year to senior dog adoptions. My husband found most of the dogs we rescued lost in the city of Los Angeles and most of them were young. Looking back, we rescued four senior dogs, one, Princess came from here in the canyon, she was a black Lab, border collie cross and one of the finest and best dogs I have ever known. I don't know if you read Kim at Golden Pines blog, if not, I am enclosing a link or web address. She rescues old, often very old, Golden Retrievers and Labs. They are very old, often sick, often pass away, and it breaks your heart sometimes, but then your heart just feels so great that there are people like her in this world. She works with a rescue. You would like her.

Molly the AireGirl said...

And you look beautiful in every single one of your sweaters, Ruby! Mom would love to adopt a senior pup one day. We shall see.

Harvey Button said...

I will take a senior cat 100% without hesitation. I am also encouraged that PetPlan insurers will now insure a senior with no health issues. Obviously the pre-existing conditions applies as with any policy BUT the option is now there. Maybe its the same for dogs.

Senior Pets ROCK!!!!

Bernard Lima-Chavez said...

Bucket lists for any dog, but especially older dogs, is such a great idea! Reading this reminds me to make every day count with (and FOR!) my dogs. They deserve the best!

Ruckus Eskie said...

Experienced and well seasoned :)

Bella Roxy & Macdui said...

Great reasons for adopting a Senior dog.

debbie carter said...

I love that you're going to be highlighting senior dogs this year! That's amazing! And Ruby's list of adventures and plans sound great. Good luck with your goals and have an awesome 2018. Can't wait to read all the sweet senior stories. I'll have my tissues handy

da tabbies o trout towne said...

ruby...ya best hope ta cod de boss doez knot see that ree mark bout bossy pantz catz...just sayin......happee yeer oh de dawg two ewe !!! ewe haz done mor in yur life than most peepulz....think a bout it ;) ☺☺♥♥

Seville at Nerissa's Life said...

Eatin' cat food is on Ruby's bucket list? I'm a cat! I have food. Ruby, you need to come visit me and we'll have a tea party. Minus the tea. But with LOTS of food. PURRS

Ruth Epstein said...

Ruby Layla says thank you for calling 2018 the year of senior dogs as she is aging and will be 11 this year :) Your bucket list is amazing and I think we must make one also and see how it goes. You are a great model for a rescue dog and we thank you

♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥ said...

That's an amazing bucket list, sweet Ruby - AND we are so happy you have found an even more amazing and loving home.

Woos - Lightning, Misty, and Timber

Melody & Misha said...

It's wonderful that you adopted a senior dog and given her such an adventurous life. Ruby, you've done things that I haven't done!

Kinley Westie said...

Sounds like ya has some pawsome plans for 2018!

Kamira G said...

Ruby, I love your list of completed bucket list items. You are quite the traveler. So inspiring. Just because you are a senior, that doesn't mean you slow down. Keep dreaming and checking off those items one by one.

Beth said...

I can't help but think that Ruby has inspired a lot of people to adopt their next dog! We used to always get puppies, but after adopting Theo as an adult, I don't think I'll ever have a puppy again. Senior dogs are awesome!

Jana Rade said...

This guy looks insanely happy! What a lucky pup.

Tenacious Little Terrier said...

I hope your 2018 list goes well! Fostering a senior pet would be nice but then they'd have to live with Mr. N who has all the energy so I don't know if they would like it.

Irene said...

I’m so excited about your 2018 focus on senior adoptions. Matthew and I absolutely love Labradoodles, but we would also like to adopt senior rescue pups once we retire. Or are a bit closer to retirement. I’ll be following your posts closely. Ruby, your 2018 bucket list sounds ambitious as a bucket list should but totally within the reach of a well-traveled pup like you. Looking forward to reading more about your progress this year as well.

meowmeowmans said...

We love you, Ruby, and looks forward to reading about how your Year of the Senor Dog goes!

Sandy Kubillus said...

You've given Ruby such a good life! Sometimes an older dog can be a lot calmer than getting a puppy. I'm glad Ruby has worked out for you.

Monika said...

So sweet. It seems Ruby will have a fabulous year with all those fun events and goals. Good luck with achieving your goals, Ruby!

Mark Muller said...

Ruby you are an amazing pup... and I hope for many senior pet adoptions this year... you are right let's make this dog-year to a senior-dog year ;O)))

Tails Around the Ranch said...

Wishing you (and all senior dogs) the very best in 2018~the Year of the Dog, Ruby girl.

Animal Lover Amelia said...

When I had my pet sitting business, older clients needed to find homes for their pets when they knew their health was failing. Unfortunately, they did not trust their children to care for their pets. I was able to find forever homes for their elderly heart sang with the win for the pet parent, the win for the adopter and the win for the pet.

Dear Mishu said...

Ruby you are such a cutie, I hope you have a wonderful 2018! Sounds like there's a lot of fun waiting for you!! ~ Dear Mishu

Madi and Mom said...

Ruby WE ARE SO PROUD OF YOU AND all you accomplished thus far. The sky is the limit for you!! Your smile is worth a million bucks
Hugs madi your bfff

Denise Gruzensky said...

I am so excited to read your new series! I loved "The Specials" and have no doubt the year of the senior dog will be just as amazing! Thank you for ALL you do and the wonderful way you have with words to share their stories!

Momma Kat and Her Bear Cat said...

Oh, my goodness! I would LOVE to meet you at BlogPaws, Ruby! I love your idea for senior pets about rewriting the story. Ellie's 6 ... so not a senior - but I find myself considering what kind of fool would let her go. It doesn't really matter though, does it? She's safe and secure now and couldn't be more loved. Ruby, you bring so much happiness and hope to those around you - all while making it look effortless!

Pam Greer said...

So inspirational. I hope you have a great year Ruby!

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