A senior dog.

When it comes to homeless dogs, they’re all adoptable, right? What we mean is, all dogs deserve to be adopted into safe, nurturing, comfortable homes. Unfortunately, the fact remains that there are dogs out there that simply don’t appeal to every prospective dog owner. Whether it’s their age, coat color, health status, breed, or general appearance, a “less adoptable” dog depends on our ability to look beyond what’s on the surface. 

Endless Love

In the same magical manner that dogs know when we’re feeling blue, or instinctively guide us toward safety, they know when they’re being rescued. Bringing home a dog who endured months alone in a shelter, or one that was repeatedly surrendered by well-intentioned people, just feels good. What’s more, a dog that’s widely perceived as less adoptable than others will repay their new owners with unparalleled love and loyalty for the rest of their lives. 

Given the Chance

A less adoptable dog might have a disease or disability that requires a bit more time, education, and commitment, but providing for them is well worth any extra effort. They may be middle-aged or seniors, deaf, blind, special needs, or covered in dark fur. They could be a certain breed, like a pit bull, that suffers from unfair prejudice. 

Many people looking to adopt are looking for younger, picture-perfect, healthy, issue-free dogs, and with the high numbers of homeless dogs, they aren’t difficult to locate. However, the real underdogs are the ones that are overlooked simply because of the way they come across online, or have inaccurate reputations that precede them.

Helping a Less Adoptable Dog

If you aren’t able to open your home to a dog that may (or may not) have specific hurdles toward successful placement, there are other ways you can help them in their plight to find a home:

  • Spread the word! Social media is incredible to facilitate adoptions. Share photos of a dog that’s having trouble finding their forever home, and ask that your followers and friends continue to share. Likewise, if you know of a success story that concerns a less adoptable dog, post and share as much as possible.
  • Talk up the benefits of a less adoptable dog to anyone who will listen. Raise awareness about the reality of “black dog syndrome” or the misperceptions of special needs dogs.
  • Help older folks in your life find older dogs that will dedicate themselves to constant warmth and companionship. 
  • Donate your time and/or services to dogs that are enduring shelter life with few or no prospects. If you’re a photographer, offer your services to showcase the adorable features of special needs dogs.

A Happy Future

Our staff at Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital love all animals, but especially the ones that have survived against all odds. Dogs that face terrible fates can become some of the most valued family members out there. We are privileged to know quite a few of these special dogs, and value the bond they have with those on their path.

If you have questions about adoption or providing care to a less adoptable dog, please call us at (210) 681‑1391.