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Updated on October 4, 2015
A 'Tiny' Beagle, once a hunting dog until she got too old to perform. The sweetest soul you can imagine!
A 'Tiny' Beagle, once a hunting dog until she got too old to perform. The sweetest soul you can imagine! | Source

It breaks my heart...

I get a lot of disturbing emails... Emails about Senior animals!

It breaks my heart to see them dumbed; ...unwanted!

Just this morning I opened my mail and the first email catching my eye: 16 year old...

I have seen emails and Facebook posts for dogs and cats as old as 18!

What were you thinking?

What makes those owners or family members think that a Senior animal has any chance in a kill shelter? ...Most young dogs or even puppies can't even make it out alive; neither can young cats and kittens!

What were you thinking?

They gave their entire life to you! They faithfully loved you; unconditionally and without a second thought! They sat with you when you were sad; and smiled with you when you were happy!

What were you thinking?

'Tiny' Beagle

Tiny came to me from a less than perfect ...situation. Don't know how much of the story is true since her former owner tended to juggle facts around and change her story a lot. A supposed stray had turned out to be one of her 50+ possible breeding dogs she has listed in a micro-chip company's database.

Tiny was full-blooded. She may have been one of them!

Supposedly she rescued her from a guy who had her as a hunting dog. When she got too old, he dumped her in a pen and forgot her. She supposedly was overweight from too much food and no exercise.

When I got her she was little more than skin and bones!

I can't describe you the gift she was. She had this beautiful soul that gave and gave and gave! No dog could have been any sweeter. And no dog could have made you laugh like that! She would stand somewhere and bark this Beagle bark; because something wasn't like she wanted it. Or maybe she had been sleeping somewhere and you couldn't find her right away; but suddenly she had wanted to come inside! On her own turf and when it pleased her... every so gentle and loving.

I spend hours sitting on the couch; her on my lap and barely enough room for the laptop too! She loved to snuggle with you; never taking, always grateful for every bit you gave her.

I only had two month or so with her, but it felt like a lifetime! One day she started limping. We thought she had been run over by one of the other dogs. Two days later I watched her have a stroke; and set her free!

Nobody can describe the grief I felt when I lost a unwanted old dog that had only been with me for a little over two months!

The impact this sweet soul had on my life, no matter how long or short our relationship was, can not be put in words!

You have to feel it to understand!

You have to be loved and love a Senior to understand!

My own very special Sun(ny)shine.
My own very special Sun(ny)shine. | Source

The 'Sunny' Bunny

I wrote at length about him before, so I will make it short.

He came to me as a probable Puppy Mill dog with an attitude that would have left a rattlesnake speechless. He was much more grumpy than any Senior I had ever encountered; and about twice as set in his ways. His language was growls, barks and teeth!

For the second time in my life I was thinking about giving up on a dog I thought I just couldn't handle!

Something as simple as giving him freedom and the chance to be a dog turned this old boy into the old guy I miss so much.

Shortly after the picture was taken he started getting really quiet; sleeping a lot and just moving around like an old man.

One day (or night) just a few days later he was gone!

Maybe it hurts more because he made it so hard to earn his trust; and had such a hard time showing his love! Maybe because it made it so much more special!

Like Tiny he had deserved so much better than he was dealt with; and still gave his love and trust, despite what had happened to him!

How many people do you know that get/got treaded so horribly, can still be so warm and loving!?

Still give their love so unconditionally; not holding back!


They swore she would die shortly after her tenth birthday... She died at 17!
They swore she would die shortly after her tenth birthday... She died at 17! | Source

Fancy's Southern Bell

She was a full-blooded Miniature Sheltie with papers and all; ...and I didn't give a rat's ...... about it!

For me she was one of those dogs that touch your life with all four paws!

...And leave you feeling abandoned when they die!

A breeder reject because she wasn't 'perfect' she had been given to my Ex for free. Too scared to walk pass you into the house; always crawling on her belly when you called her!

I never needed a leash to keep her close; ...she stayed close because she loved me!

My children loved her and were loved by her! My dogs, also mostly 60lbs+ and more, feared their 12lbs 'misstress'! She was the Alpha between dogs four or more times her size; and the Angel of Love for her family!

She came to us at age four; ...and left us over 13 years later at almost 18!

She never truly got to live at our new and final home; ...she died on the way to it during the last trip from the old house!

The new house (or home) never truly felt the same; a spirit had been gone from it!

'Tuff' Tough, Emperor of his own.
'Tuff' Tough, Emperor of his own. | Source

The 'Tuff' Guy

Quiet, regal, and with a personality that just took over! Tuff was just a gentle force to be reckoned with!

He had been dumped at a kill shelter full of unwanted cats and dogs and at the ripe old age of 13.
Owner surrender! Full shelter! Live expectancy: Hours! ...Maybe a day or two!

I guess an old guy that really just wants to lay around on a comfortable spot was just too much work!

Always gentle and loving he didn't ask for much. Some soft food so that this lion-like old warrior can chew it with his worn down teeth, a bit of your time to feel his love returned. He was easy to please.

The other cats respected him and even Rusty (Wallace), our wild child, knew not to border him. He was the Emperor of his own Empire; and our best friend.

He was with us for a seemingly long time; ...but as fast we will all agree that it wasn't long enough.

How can you feel like you had 'enough' time with somebody, if you love him so much; ...and your love was returned!?

Tobias, a tiny lost soul full of love!
Tobias, a tiny lost soul full of love! | Source


He had been named 'Foxy' and dumped as a 13 year old Pom (a breed that rarely makes it over ten) and unaltered in a kill shelter.
I don't know if the fact that he wasn't fixed had something to do with it, but since losing Tiny I wondered why two unaltered animals had died 'young' and of a stroke!?

When he came to me he was confused and skinny. I guess not every shelter is set up to feed a dog with no or bad teeth wet food when it can't chew the dry food. He was so scared and would flinch at every loud noise.

But he loved being held; clinging to you, searching for comfort!

I felt so bad for him! He had been a beautiful dog and must have been once somebody's beloved companion. At least I hope he was!

How horrible must it be for an old guy to lose his comfortable home and a person he loves... and get dumped in a metal and/or concrete cell; surrounded by the smell of fear and death!

How confused must he have been! And how afraid!

He was so happy to lay on my bed and be close to me. All he wanted was to feel safe!

He was only with me for a week, but I am glad he didn't die of Heartstick, Gas or Lethal Injection! He hadn't deserved it! And hadn't deserved to be dumped with the other unwanted!

One evening he was with me, the next morning he was gone!

And not a day goes by that I don't miss him!

I drove hours to get him and only had a few days with him! But it was worth every mile and every minute!

Like I said: You have to experienced it to understand!

The 'Queen' of my House
The 'Queen' of my House | Source


I saw this ad about a Pomeranian and thought about the cute little fur-ball I had wanted after meeting Fancy. Me, the BIG dog person! (My smallest dog weight 50lbs!)

What I found was not the tiny furball, but a roughly 14lb miserable creature in a dog pen full of shit in the back of somebody's yard. Supposedly she kept jumping on her female owner who was sick and confined to the couch/bed.

Queeny never jumped on me or anybody! She is too scared of being beaten!

She wasn't what I had wanted, but I had wanted her! Maybe God was teaching me a lesson about being superficial! She turned out to be the perfect dog.

She rarely barks and only at her rear if she has an itch. She does not attack anything or anybody or has evere growled in her life (with me). She is house broke if you let her out on a regular base and really just wants to be left alone.

While I hope she enjoys when we pet her, she won't ever seek you out!

Supposedly she was two. Add six more years when the vet looked at her bad teeth! But when they did the tests they said she would probably not do well in surgery and may not live long. That was a few years ago!

It took me six months to earn a first tail wag. It was the greatest day of my life, I thought! She stiffens up when you pick her up, but we do it anyway. Maybe it is more important to us to hold her and make her feel loved than it is for her to feel something she hopefully knows!

She still lays on the stairs or in some pile of cloth she finds or pulls out of baskets. She is almost blind and surely deaf. So when we take her out we always have to search and find out which bush she is sleeping in to be undisturbed. But how could we forget the 'Queen of our House'!?

Somebody had wanted a fancy Pom... Just like I did! But for some odd reason they dumped her in the furthest corner of their yard and forgot her!

To see the gentle creature she is, I don't get why her owners didn't love her! She is perfect! And would have loved anybody if somebody would have told her it was OK!

I hope she knows I love her! I try to show her every day! I want her to know that not every person is out to beat her! And that showing love will not bring her more pain!

I hope she won't leave me any time soon! While she is a quiet ghost you often hardly notice, she is a beautiful creature with a even more beautiful soul! To think I may lose her some day scares me! It would be a loss felt like somebody stabbing you in the heart!

3 unwanted ones! Sally, Esmeralda & 'Beagles' aka Zora.
3 unwanted ones! Sally, Esmeralda & 'Beagles' aka Zora. | Source


She was hairless and fat! And the lousy picture just showed a miserable creature!

I am a sucker!

She has been diagnosed with Cushing's Disease, but some better food, regular baths, some affordable medication and some flea-treatment and now she is growing fur!

More important: SHE IS A SWEETHEART!

Sally has to be the sweetest dog that has ever walked Earth; ...besides Queeny. She listens well, she is very housebroke, she is ever so gentle unless you try to give her medicine.

She tries so hard to please!

Left at the shelter for some unknown reasons (unless they just didn't feel like spending $30 for a bottle of medicine that will last at least three months!), she would have been euthanized. Even the money offered to take her, made people walk by.

I just saw a miserable creature that wanted so much to be loved!

The first night we washed that sticky, itchy medical bath off of her that left her shaking in discomfort. After an oatmeal bath she was feeling (and smelling) so much better. Three days later her medicine arrived, but by then the flea treatment and Omega 3/Fishoil pills had already started to work!

She had slept in my bed starting the first night. All she wanted to do was lay really close and be covered by an old blanket. She needed the close contact to feel safe and loved.

No matter how often you promise her that she will be fine, she always has to make sure. She follows me around wherever I go and watches every step I take. When I come home, she is already waiting there for me; that tail goes a hundred miles an hour!

She has this tendency to stare at you when she wants attention. If it is time for her to go to bed, she will jump up on my chair and just simply look at me. If I look back, the tail starts going! If I don't look, a gentle nose will notch my arm once or twice.

This Corgi body with the Sheltie face and fluff is every once of love in a tiny body with a giant heart! When she loves you, she does it with everything she could possibly offer!

How ungrateful can any human be to answer her freely given love and trust with resentment and the possibility of death!?

But, your loss is my gain!

With the hope that I will be able to enjoy this love for years to come, I am grateful for the chance to have her in my life!

And I answer her love in kind!

I give up! It's a horrible picture of her, but I tried at least twenty times and she won't hold still. She just wants to love you!
I give up! It's a horrible picture of her, but I tried at least twenty times and she won't hold still. She just wants to love you! | Source


Bethany kind of 'fell into my lap'. To read the story on how I found her, see the link below.

Bethany, named by my Oldest after some game (no surprise), is one of the sweetest, most loving cats you could ever encounter!

A former 'Friend' would call her needy. And needy she is! She 'needs' to have you close, have you hug her, have you hold her, have you pet her, have you love her!

She wants to be your second skin and shower you in her love she so freely offers!

She greats you happily and as enthusiastic as only a beloved pet can great you! And while she is almost completely blind, she can recognize you by your steps, your voice, your scent. And she sees just barely enough to not run into things when she hurries to meet you and show you her love!

I can not imagine how it must have felt for this loving kitty to be thrown out like trash!

And still... She is the most loving cat you can imagine!

No hard feelings, no bitterness, just love!

How would we feel if somebody would dump us like that? Would we still be able to offer unconditional love? Can we, as humans, even feel unconditional love?

Sometimes it makes me wonder!

Bethany's Story:


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    • alisha4u profile image


      6 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Thanks for bringing that up CatR... Appreciate it !

    • Suzie ONeill profile image

      Suzie ONeill 

      6 years ago from Lost in La La Land

      I think it's wonderful that you've taken in these animals and given them a good home. Thank you for sharing their stories!

    • Cat R profile imageAUTHOR

      Cat R 

      6 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      Thank you very much, Angela.

    • Angela Blair profile image

      Angela Blair 

      6 years ago from Central Texas

      After reading this Hub I'm reminded of "When you do unto the least of these you have done unto Me." You deserve great blessings, my dear -- congratulations on your work with senior animals and your exceptional writing. Best/Sis

    • Cat R profile imageAUTHOR

      Cat R 

      6 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      It's actually a little selfish too, Mary. I am getting older and walking my dogs for miles at a time or throwing balls for hours is getting a little hard.

      A Senior is a easy keeper. A few couches, some food, a bit of love...

      Seniors don't chew, are usually house broke, don't jump fences... And what you see is what you get! No surprises!

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 

      6 years ago from Florida

      you are a great person to take in these dogs and cats. I wish more people would do this. I rescued a Maltese that I named Mister (I wrote a Hub about him). He was the sweetest dog I've ever had. He was old and had been discarded by his owner.

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      6 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      this is a wonderful hub. You are a wonderful person to take in these beautiful dogs and cats. You have a wonderful heart.

      Thank you for what you do

      voted up


    • picklesandrufus profile image


      6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      I wish the world had more people like you. I have made a commitment to only getting shelter dogs. Great, eye opening hub.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I admier what your doing thanks for raising awarness on this issue its so sad to see theese dogs great hub!!!

    • Cat R profile imageAUTHOR

      Cat R 

      6 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      I'm just one of a team, Joyce. There are thank God quite a few caring people out there! Not enough, but anything is better than nothing.

      Rescue is a team effort between those that take pictures, those that post, those that pull for others, those that transport, those that sponsor, those that rescue, those that adopt!

      I wish we humans would adopt the knowledge that animals are living creatures, not just things or tools.

      I wish that there were would be government sponsored spay/neuter programs that would help prevent overpopulation.

      I wish there were more people like both you and 'Martin's Fraeulein' that do so much and don't turn a blind eye on those in need!

    • writer20 profile image

      Joyce Haragsim 

      6 years ago from Southern Nevada

      You are a great Mom caring for a lot animals. I'm feeding a stray ginger cat, sometimes he comes to sliding door and stares in until I can't take any more. Now he meows to me while I'm carrying food over to him.

      Your doing such a great job looking after all your cats an dogs,Joyce.

    • Martins Fraulein profile image

      Martins Fraulein 

      6 years ago

      thats why i donate 40.00 every month to the ASPCA.


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