“Daisy” was a mess, poor old girl. When I saw her photo online, I knew I had to meet her. Our dog, Molly had passed away not long before and I felt I was ready for a new friend. I arrived at the shelter and found a mess of a dog. Her fur was so dirty and matted. Her paperwork had her listed as a cream poodle, picked up as a stray, around 10 years old or so. She hadn’t been spayed. Her eyes were clouded over with cataracts. I could see that she’d had a difficult life and knew she needed someone to help her. I have a soft spot for senior dogs, for the “underdogs” that might not have a chance.

Without hesitation, I adopted her. I took her immediately to my groomer, Joyce who did a double take when I walked in the door with her. I don’t know that she’d ever seen a dog in her condition but I knew she was up to the task so I left my new (old) girl in good hands and headed home to prepare for her arrival.

With mixed feelings, I putted around the house wondering if I’d made the right decision by adopting a dog so soon after Molly’s death, let alone a senior dog with potential health issues. Molly had been with us for 14 years. She was a border collie mix that we’d adopted at the pound when she was 6 months old. She was a sweet old gentle soul who’d never have harmed a flea. One day several years earlier, I stepped outside and found Molly gently licking the back of a little alligator lizard. That lizard was in heaven, thoroughly enjoying a back rub!

My hesitation to adopt a dog vanished later that day when I walked by my front door and saw a shadow. I opened the door to find a big alligator lizard standing at the threshold staring up at me. I tried to shoo it away and closed the door, but the little creature wouldn’t leave. In fact it ran into the house a couple of times and I had to chase it back out the door to the threshold where it stayed. I was confused at first and then I remembered Molly’s lizard. I had just written about it in a letter I wrote to Molly after she died and I knew this was no coincidence. This was Molly’s way of telling me that adopting this old dog was the right thing to do.

When I returned to Joyce’s to pick her up, I was startled to see a beautiful, white purebred miniature poodle. I named her Petunia. We already had a Daisy, a black poodle that we also adopted as a senior a few years earlier. I started to call them my little “salt and pepper shakers”. I‘d put them in their doggie stroller and take them to the park, my sweet little senior dogs.

It wasn’t long before we found out that Petunia had epilepsy. She started having seizures within a month of her adoption. We put her on medication and she’s been seizure free ever since.

Since that time, I’ve adopted 7 more senior dogs, all various shapes and sizes.
They each have different personalities. They all have different needs, but the one thing they all have in common is that they all have a place to call home. Forever.

Michelle from CA