Hate the idea of older pets being left alone? This new initiative needs your help… 48



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Free ‘senior pets for senior people’ initiatives are now being offered by local councils throughout Australia, giving animals and people alike a new lease on life.

“Many older residents are fearful of taking on a cat or dog because of the lengthy commitment, and they worry about looking after an animal long-term,” says Kylie Brooks, from Queensland’s Logan City Council.

“In these instances, the Animal Management Centre undertakes to take back the cat or dog for rehoming if necessary,” which is a major point of difference for senior programs.

Another wonderful aspect is that pets involved in senior programs are at least five years old, and generally have more settled personalities.

In addition,“cats and dogs receive a behavioural and orthopaedic assessment to ensure suitability,” says Brooks. 

Pet ownership boasts many health and lifestyle benefits, especially for those of us within an older age bracket.

Studies have proven that just five minutes cuddling a pet can reduce your stress hormones, whilst releasing feel-good hormones and serotonin.

This week, a new study even demonstrated that people with dogs are less likely to suffer from anxiety – proving that Fido really is man’s best friend.

Pet ownership also has mental heath benefits for retired servicemen and women.

“The ‘Dogs for Diggers’ program in Australia has provided lifelines to returning soldiers impacted by conflict,” explains Brooks.

Of course, connecting senior pets with senior people advantages each animal too.

They get a second chance at having a loving home, which is an opportunity not often afforded to older cats and dogs.

Rather than just relying on normal shelter-based adoption, “the community loves that we do all we can to rehome behaviourally sound and health cats and dogs,” says Brooks.

“The program has been remarkably successful. It gives our team great pleasure to see the seniors of our community matched up with the right senior pets.”


Find out more information here!

Would you adopt an older cat or dog? We want to see photos of your fur babies!

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  1. Fantastic idea we got a senior pet and after a short adjustment period he settled in fine. The dog rescue people we got him from charges over $300 for most of their older dogs and I think that too dear. I don’t know what their success rate is for rehoming dogs over 5 at that sort of price.

    1 REPLY
    • We adopted our beautiful Pepa almost 3 years ago when she was 12 years old, she is now just about to turn 15 and is a huge part of our family, along with 16 year old Millie, they love each other.

  2. They need to charge that price Barbara to recoup any vet bills. Adopting and fostering is most rewarding

    1 REPLY
    • Yes I don’t begrudge paying something for my dog and I don’t like seeing give aways on Gumtree as I think pet owning has a cost and if you can’t afford the cost of the pet you can’t afford to own one. I do think between $100 and $200 would be more reasonable with an old dog who in our dogs case came straight from his old home the day we collected him. My concern is that the high cost will put people off adopting an older dog. The probability that the older dog will need vet work or a special diet is greater than for the young pup.

  3. Currently enjoying No. 2 Except for difficulty of losing loved pet after 8 or so years, Current companion been with family about 4 years, she was nearly 5 when adopted.

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