Puppies seem to get all the attention, but we think it’s time to send some love to the older dogs. Maybe they aren’t as energetic as they once were, and maybe they’ve gone a little grey behind the ears, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t totally adorable and worthy of adoption.
Senior dog Ralph came to Dog Tales Rescue and Horse Sanctuary from an overcrowded shelter in Miami and though he’s got some health problems, he’s still a “spunky, happy dog” (which is really all of our aging goals, right?). He carries it well, but Ralph has arthritis, some muscle deterioration and lingering injuries from being hit by a car. Thankfully, the Dog Tales Rescue (Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on Gusto) team has a fun and effective solution.
This week, Ralph had his first hydrotherapy session with vet technician Lori and dog handler Daniel. They wanted to get him into the warm hydrotherapy pool to take some strain off his bones and muscles and give him an opportunity to move more freely than he can on land. After some initial hesitation, this old boy was swimming around like a dog half his age!
“When dogs swim they use a lot of their front legs which is going to be great for his poor little elbows because it’s low-impact,” Lori explained. “The buoyancy provides a much safer environment for dogs with arthritis or recovering from surgery.”
Look at that good boy go!
While Ralph was taking the most productive bath of his long life, Dog Tales was also hosting some significantly younger guests. A lot of them. Parents of five—yes, FIVE—Catherine and Steve brought their whole crew to the shelter to see how they would jive with a bonded pair of dogs. The family is used to chaos, so they’re totally prepared to add two new canine siblings to the mix. Since bonded pairs—two dogs who are emotionally attached to one another—are so hard to find homes for, the Dog Tales team is thrilled.
“Many people don’t want to adopt a bonded pair just because it’s double everything—it’s double the money, the vet care, the food,” Dog Tales owner Danielle explained. “I know it would be easier to separate bonded pairs and find them separate homes but I can’t do that. This bond is really strong and I don’t want to break their hearts.”
While things are going well back at the shelter, Danielle and head horse trainer Ilana have another situation to deal with nearby—a stray, cancer-stricken horse reported by a man who found it wandering on his land. Dog Tales has the resources to take care of the horse, but they can’t do anything until they find the owner and get permission to officially adopt him.
Watch the full episode of Dog Tales Rescue below.