Sunday, November 8, 2015


November is Adopt A Senior Pet Month.

I have always had senior pets.

When I was a child my mother had a pet chicken named Henny Penny. She had her own chicken coup and when she wasn’t eating bird seed, she pecked at bugs around the yard.

Troubles seemed like the oldest dog on record, but we couldn’t be sure of her age. Our neighbors Oscar and Eloise moved to Oregon when I was a preschooler. We took their dogs Troubles and Queenie, two sister mongrels. I could not identify the many different breeds that went into them. Queenie was killed on the highway right after the neighbors moved.

I remember that when my dad pulled Queenie’s body off the highway, Troubles followed him and watched as Queenie’s grave was dug.

I was a preschooler then., We still had the dog Troubles when I graduated from high school and she lived for a few years after that.

I adopted a four month old cat in March 1972. Both of his hind legs were broken; he had malnutrition and various other medical problems. The shelter manager said he was too badly injured to live. He was slated for euthanasia at the shelter, but I loved him from the moment I saw him. I named him Thaddeus and he lived until December 1992; He had just turned twenty.

A few years after Thaddeus died, I had a very rough year. My dad died of cancer in August of 1995. As I struggled with that, we knew a stray cat lived in the neighborhood. I told all our neighbors I would take the cat if anyone caught her.

On December 16 of that year, the day before my birthday, my husband noticed the stray, a pretty young calico in our back yard.

He went out and brought her in. We guessed she was seven to nine months old. I named her Felina, after a Mexican dancer in an old Marty Robbins song, “Music would play and Felina would whirl.” Felina is still living with us. She is now twenty years old and will soon celebrate 20 years of living with us.

We did adopt a senior pet when we adopted Lancelot from the Pet Adoption Alternative in Warren. The vet guessed Lancelot was eight years old then.

Tiki our dog adopted from Michigan Animal Rescue is 14 born in 2001 and Senior pets bring a lot of joy. They are easier to cope with than kittens and puppies. There is no potty training.

What is or was your oldest pet?

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