Those of us who spend lots of time with more mature ladies and gentlemen know just how charming and lovable they are (particularly the animal kind)!
Unfortunately, some people may not consider an older pet, so we’re offering a few ageless adoption tips and promotion ideas.
Bring Them Up To Date
Make sure your senior pets get updated physicals. Laura Oliver, Director of Operations at California senior dog rescue Lionel’s Legacy, says that before adoptions are finalized her agency likes to provide “tune-ups” that include blood work, urinalysis, all vaccinations, heartworm test and dentals and/or mass removals if needed.
Make Them Free (Or Reduce The Fee)
Many agencies have chosen to waive fees or offer discount adoptions on senior pets. One Seniors Adopting Seniors promotion, for example, offered half off the adoption fee for any animal 8 or older – and half off the fee was removed as well for any adopter 65 or older. That means a senior who adopts a senior gets their new best friend free!
Connect With Businesses
Oliver suggests reaching out to local businesses or individuals to sponsor a senior, which could include one or two months of any medications (they've even done some for life) plus food, bowls, a leash and collar, a dog bed and a free vet exam.
Have More Pun
Put your own spin on promotions, using fun, attention-grabbing images and phrases. Vintage Days? Love Is Ageless? Senior Strut? Even if it feels a little silly, having your staff brainstorm punderful promotion ideas could be an exciting and energizing activity!
Polish Them Up
We always say pets should be promoted with great photos, and this is especially true for seniors. Adopters may be uncertain about how a senior will fit into their lifestyle, so grab photos and videos of the dog interacting with other animals and people to offer insight about how the dog would be at home. Oliver suggests choosing a location where people can picture themselves hanging out or walking with their new senior dog.
Tell It Like It Is
Be as open and thorough as possible in your bios, including any medical and behavioral needs of the dog. Include notes from foster parents, vets and others who have experience with the dog's needs.
"We're in the business of saving the lives of senior dogs and giving them a second chance. Adopters are willing to do the same when we are there to support the dogs and their new families," says Oliver. Share low-cost resources on long-term medications, support adopters with pet insurance info and connect them with vets willing to provide quality care to adopters taking on senior dogs.