The sweet dog didn’t understand why his family gave him up…

It’s a sad reality that senior dogs and cats in animal shelters are often overlooked by people looking to adopt. Everyone wants a cute little puppy or kitten that they can raise from scratch and shape into the perfect companion. This leaves older animals at risk of spending weeks or even months in a shelter without being adopted, putting them in danger of being euthanized if they’re in a kill shelter —  losing all hope.

Now, Charlie, a seven-year-old Shih Tzu, knew this struggle all too well. Despite being a lovable and affectionate pup, he remained in the shelter for weeks with no one showing any interest in taking him home.

Charlie’s physical problems made it even harder for the shelter to find him a forever home. But after months in the shelter, Charlie finally found someone who wanted to take him home. Unfortunately, his new owners returned him to the shelter after discovering a small problem with the dog. Charlie had a spinal disc injury that made it difficult for him to climb stairs on his own. The owners didn’t want to carry him up and down the stairs every day, so they decided to return him to the shelter.

Back in the shelter, Charlie’s mood became sour, and he refused to interact with the other dogs. He was depressed and seemed to have given up hope of ever finding a forever home. It was clear that the Shih Tzu didn’t lead a happy and optimistic life there. Even though the shelter crew did their best to keep Charlie busy and give him as much affection and attention as possible, the four-footer still felt lonely, and depressed and needed more human interaction. That is until Mackenzie Purdy walked in and decided to spend some quality time with him.

Mackenzie immediately saw something special in Charlie, despite his age and physical challenges.

He was a bit older, and he walked a little funny, so I had a feeling that not many people would be interested in him,” she said. “So many people won’t be interested in the dogs that don’t come to the front of the cage at the shelter.”

At first, Charlie remained standoffish, but Mackenzie had a plan. She brought her other dog, Baxter, to the shelter to visit Charlie, and the two dogs hit it off like long-lost friends.

“Charlie was wagging his tail more, and Baxter was interested in him,” Mackenzie recalls. “They told me I could come the next day to bring him home.”

Charlie finally found his forever home with Mackenzie and Baxter. He now lives a happy and comfortable life, surrounded by love and affection. Mackenzie’s decision to adopt an older dog with physical challenges may have seemed like a difficult one, but for her, it was an easy choice. “Charlie just seemed like he needed someone,” she said. And it turns out he’s just the sweetest thing in the world.”

Charlie’s story is just one of many animals in shelters that are overlooked due to age, physical limitations, or other reasons. It’s important to remember that these animals still have so much love to give and deserve a chance at finding a forever home. As Mackenzie showed us, sometimes all it takes is a little patience, love, and understanding to give these animals the second chance they deserve.

Sources: AWM, Thedodo, Ronproject

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