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It’s called commitment

November 13, 2014

In a recent issue of the AARP Bulletin an article about human divorce (“Divorce Will Cost You” by Jane Bryant Quinn) gave the statistic that divorces of couples over 50 rose 25% in the last 20 years. The reasons for these divorces include, as given in the article, “The partners bore each other, harbor grudges, seek a different kind of life or fall in love with someone else.”

I was suddenly and sadly struck with the complete parallel to the reasons (admitted or not) for the prevalent abandonment of senior dogs, sometimes by a family whose been a dog’s only family for his or her lifetime. These dogs often have their lives undeservedly cut short because the adoption rate for senior dogs is woefully low.

It all comes down to commitment. Humans don’t seem to be long on that quality these days. When a dog whose loved you for perhaps his whole life begins to slow down or perhaps doesn’t play in the same ways you always loved, it is not the time to cast him/her aside to be replaced by a cute young canine that has caught your fancy.

If you are considering adding a dog to your home, give serious thought to the dedication this relationship will rightfully require from you. Then be ready, when you accept the love of a dog into your life, to make a commitment to be there for him or her, with your love in return, to the last days.

Let met also add that senior dogs make great adoptees. When i adopted my then 13-year-old basset hound Oliver, an instantaneous new channel of love flowed through my household. He is now a bubbly, joyful 15, and we are both happily honoring our commitment to each other.

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