The Senior Sanctuary
Over the 22 years ARFhouse has been rescuing dogs, we have accepted many dogs who were seniors when they arrived. There have been numerous who have spent their lives here; starting out as young puppies, and never quite having the personality or behavior to fit into a home environment. There were others who came as young adults with "issues"; i.e., bite history, climbers, diggers, dog aggression, timid, jumpers, or any number of behavioral traits that resulted in their never being adopted. They had a comfortable life here. Many lived in the big pack, swimming in the pond, bedding down in the large barn on dog beds at night, and running with the humans on golfcarts during the day. Those who were aggressive or timid had their own yard and received the same attention from employees as any other dog(s) have.
Four years ago we built a large kennel building where 18 of the oldsters now reside with roomy indoor/outdoor areas, and comfortable temperatures inside.
The older dogs are like humans in that as they age, their medical problems increase. That means more trips to the veterinarian. ARFhouse doesn't euthanize when a senior dog's health fails unless he is in pain that cannot be managed and death is inevitable. It is a terrible decision for animal caregivers to make, but it's the last favor we're able to do for our best friends.
Dixie lives in our senior bldg. Her eyes had to be removed right after arriving at ARFhouse. Our veterinarian found painful tumors on her eyelids and recommended taking the eyes. She seems content and is comfortable in the bldg. She receives a lot of attention from staff members.
"Muffin" was rescued by ARFhouse employees 10 years ago. She lived on the same road where ARFhouse is located, had given birth to 3 puppies and they were mostly living in the middle of the road. The owner no longer wanted her nor the puppies. We asked if we could bring her to ARFhouse and he was happy to turn her over to us. "Muffin" has always been shy, but has found a little spot where she stays most of the time in one of the large yards. She gets a can of pedigree every day and no one tries to steal her food. She has a fierce sounding growl....but never bites.
"Scout" has the biggest bark at ARFhouse. She was found as a small puppy 10 years ago and delivered to our gate by a friend. She's such a big girl, no one ever had an interest in adopting her. She seems content to lie on the big porch and join the big pack in their shenanigans.
"Tommy" is the #1 dog at ARFhouse. He is a benevolent leader and no one questions his authority (not that he could do much about it).
"Tommy" is 12+ years old and sleeping quite a lot, but he still asserts his authority occasionally by strutting around the place and barking a lot.
If you would like to sponsor one of our oldsters by joining our "Be-A-Pal" Program, click on the subscribe button, and send $20 per month. Let us know who you'd like to sponsor in our gallery of seniors. Maybe you don't see a breed that interests you. Tell us what kind of dog you like and we probably have one who will suit you.
These older dogs have good manners and you'll receive a personal thank you note from any one of them you choose to sponsor, along with his/her hard copy photo. (They still believe in photos on the fridge!)
"B.J." has been at ARFhouse for about 5 years. She's easy going and loves attention.
"Shasta" has been at ARFhouse for 7 years. He and his sister, "Brooke", stay on Hovers' front porch and follow her golfcart around the acreage. He's a loyal friend.
"Brooke", "Shasta's" sister, is a loyal friend to Hovers and her brother.
"Danny" is another one of Hovers' porch dogs....following her everywhere.
"Patches" was turned in to a kill shelter in east Texas when his guardian no longer wanted him. He said it was too much trouble taking care of a blind dog. We agreed to accept him into our sanctuary when we saw his picture and heard his story. He was scheduled to be euthanized that week, and no one had shown an interest in adopting him. A kind hearted volunteer at that shelter drove many miles to deliver him to us. We promptly put him in our senior building with "Queenie", an elderly Australian Shepherd, who's very senile. "Patches" learned the doggie door quickly and also learned which bed was "Queenie's" and which one he should lie on. They're like an elderly couple who have been married for many years. He follows her quite a lot and rests his head on her back when they're just standing around.
"Big Al" was abandoned in front of ARFhouse on August 11. This picture was taken before toenail trimming. They've since been cut short. He's blind in one eye, and obviously quite elderly. He's well mannered inside, and wants to be with his person 24/7.