Take a stroll through an average adoption event and you’ll coo over cute puppies and enjoy the energized entertainment of countless young dogs. They’re all looking for homes, but there’s one doggie demographic missing from the bunch. Senior dogs six years and up are often overlooked in crowded shelters where younger, more playful pups take center stage. Older dogs typically wait longer to be adopted and spend their golden years in kennels—and that’s if they aren’t euthanized first.
Shelters all across the country face the same problem, and one pet-loving company in Florida decided to do something about it. A pet store called The Dog House of Safety Harbor held a one-of-a-kind party and extended invitations to all the dogs who are usually left on the sidelines.
The event was hosted and held by the pet supply store known for donating part of their proceeds to local animal shelters. This past Sunday, their Senior Prom Adoption Event celebrated and honored all the senior rescue dogs looking for homes in the area. They invited 13 local animal rescues to bring their adoptable senior dogs to mingle with the public.
Over 40 furry party-goers attended the event ranging in age from five years old to a 20-year-old Chihuahua. There was music, dancing, food, and games, and the event played out much like any other prom. An emcee kept the party going and shared stories of each dog in attendance. And no prom would be complete without the crowning of king and queen.
After much deliberation and a difficult decision, a judging panel made up of representatives from local government, news, and radio announced the winners.
Eight-year-old Tye from the rescue group Canine Estates was awarded king, and the Chihuahua shared his royal recognition with a 10-year-old pit bull mix named Nina. Nina was found as a stray only to be scheduled for euthanasia because the shelter needed her kennel. A no-kill rescue called Ruff Beginnings took her in, and she’s been with them for the last seven months. Rescuers hope her time in the spotlight showed people she still has a lot of life left for the right forever family.
While the royal couple basked in the limelight of their victory, their senior subjects weren’t forgotten. Rescues collected at least six adoption applications from potential suitors wanting to add senior pups to their families, and many more showed interest.
When the party was over it was back to the kennels, but these senior pups are one step closer to going home.