MAHONING VALLEY, Ohio (WKBN) – A lot of shelter and animal rescue organizations say they see an increase in animals this time of year. Most of them are older dogs.
“There’s a huge problem with people surrendering their pets all over the country and exchanging them for puppies,” said Animal Charities Coordinator Jane MacMurchy.
For Animal Charities, their biggest problem is more and more elderly people can no longer care for their pets.
It’s harder to get those older pups adopted, but this year, they’re doing something special to help them find their forever homes.
“We’re really, really highlighting and trying to put a focus on our senior residents, the ones that have been with us, some of them, for years and years,” said MacMurchy.
Animal Charities teamed up with health care providers and Three Wishes for Rubies, launching the Senior for Seniors program.
This program takes senior dogs to visit senior residents in nursing homes.
Co-Founders for the Seniors for Seniors program, Kristin Dimidovich and Shelly Marlowe, helped launch the program.
“Getting the dogs out of their cages and getting to see their personalities and help them get adopted is incredible,” said Marlowe.
Not only does it help the dogs find homes, it also helps the residents find companionship.
“When you really think about the two populations of senior residents, they’re often forgotten. They’re here and the joy that it brings to them when they are around pets and animals, it just lights up,” said Dimidovich.
“Our biggest thing is to spread more joy and companionship and raise awareness for both, both seniors in the different community settings and also senior pets and show that one visit changes a life,” said Seniors for Seniors Co-Founder Kristin Dimidovich.
The program started in November.
So far, six dogs have been adopted.