You don’t own a dog, you have a dog. And a dog has you!

“You don’t own a dog, you have a dog. And a dog has you!” is a wonderful way to approach life with a dog. It’s a quote I read in a Chelsea Handler book that stuck with me, if you saw her shows, you can tell she’s a big dog lover. (who can forget Chunk!)

If you can imagine a life with a dog, then you can imagine adopting an older dog, and if you are ready to have a dog, then you should consider visiting your local shelter or coming by Muttville Senior Dog Rescue for #ClearTheShelters adoption event tomorrow, August 17th.

On Saturday, from 10AM to 4PM on Rescue Row, senior sweethearts will be looking for love and companionship, a cheerleader, a champion, or simply a caring person to write their final chapter together with. 

Are you an introvert? There is a dog just for you! Want to be the loving hero to write the last chapter in a dog’s life? Here is a sweet sample of the available sugar faces at Muttville:

 

All over the US there are available dogs ready to get another chance at having a forever family of their own. If you live in the Bay Area, stop by Rescue Row in San Francisco and visit Muttville Senior Rescue, the San Francisco SPCA or San Francisco Animal Care and Control for lots of adoptable cuties!

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Visit Clear The Shelters.com for a list of ALL the participating rescues and shelters close to you: http://www.cleartheshelters.com/

Adoption fees are reduced or waived for qualified adopters thanks to the financial support from #NBCBayArea and #Telemundo

 

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Fifth Annual Clear The Shelters 🐾 Adoption Event Saturday August 17th

#ClearTheShelters returns! This nationwide adoption event that attempts to clear the shelters returns for a fifth year! If you or a loved one is ready to have a dog this is the weekend for you. Thanks to the sponsorship from NBC and Telemundo, adoption fees are waived, or reduced, at shelters during this special weekend. 

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Muttville Senior Dog Rescue is joining more than 50 Bay Area animal shelters and rescues who will offer low cost or waived adoption fees on August 17 

Visit ClearTheShelters.com to access a list of local participating shelters and rescues 

 

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Muttville Cuddle Club: Where Older Dogs Give Love Get Love(d) by Seniors

There are more older people who are life long dog lovers than ever before! These folks are positively influencing senior facilities and retirement centers to accept dogs either as residents, or at least as regular visitors, and I’m here for it!

Another important issue is that as we age, a dog lover may reach a point when they can’t take care of a dog, but they still enjoy giving and getting the canine affection. They intrinsically appreciate the human dog bond.

A very sweet way to access the love and affection from a dog is cuddling and for those in the San Francisco Bay Area, Muttville Senior Dog Rescue offers Cuddle Club!

 

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It ain’t easy being a big adoptable older dog

Given my personal experiences, I might have to confess to having a special place in my heart for adoptable big older dogs.

The bigger the dog, the bigger the love? For some of us, it sure can feel like you’ve been hit by a ton of bricks when you feel the love and affection and attention from a big dog like Hamilton or Nikki. When they gaze into your eyes you want to always have the right answer to their questions. If they want to go for a walk, you want to say yes. If they want a little taste of your hotdog, you want to say yes.

Thank you Muttville

When I learned that the guardian for Hamilton and Nikki passed away, which is how they found their way to Muttville Senior Dog Rescue, I felt a rush of compassion for this pair of big dogs. They are big hunks of love and they know how to engage with people.  

The morning when I arrived at the doggy loft, and took these photos, I laughed when I saw how Hamilton convinced multiple volunteers to take him for walks, while Nikki napped and lazily greeted newcomers with big head butts of fluffy affection and tail wags.

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They had thoroughly worked their magic on us all. Now they are in loving homes but their story is a wonderful example of how, even in the big city, giving a big dog another chance at a loving home is worth it.

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Thank you Muttville Senior Dog Rescue for stepping up for these big older dogs, who still had a lot to share with us humans about why dogs make life better, and why yes, sometimes the bigger the dog the bigger and heavier the loving affection.

My big dog may have crossed over but these encounters are wonderful reminders of why we fell in love with her and what an incredible opportunity she gave us. I’m still grateful for her many lessons and experiences together, unique to life with a small dinosaur.

If you get a chance to have a big adopted dog in your life, I hope you’ll consider it.

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Have a Cup of Cuteness at Muttville’s Boston Tea-rier Party Adoption Event on June 29th and June 30th

If you are looking to add a sweet little cup of cuteness into your life, this weekend make your way to Rescue Row in San Francisco, for Muttville Senior Dog Rescue’s Boston Tea-rier Party! 

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Discover why senior dogs rule when you fall in love with Henry!

O Henry you sweet, sweet, adorable love bug! Look at those eyes, he’s charming his way into your heart without even realizing it. He politely stared into my eyes until I opened my arms to let him climb up for a cuddle...

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Henry is a friendly mutt who could do just the trick for you! Slow and steady, Henry loves to hang out with other dogs, sit in laps, and be pet for hours! 

He is the king of lowering blood pressure, and keeping the blues away!

Henry is a small, light brown Terrier mix with grey around his muzzle and a calm disposition. He has the sweetest little face in the world and loves you as soon as you show him affection.

Henry is curious and friendly, and would be quite at home in any sort of living space, and would even go on walks if you asked nicely!

Henry is a perfect, chill companion who needs a loving home. Come meet this incredible boy!

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Stop by Muttville Senior Dog Rescue in San Francisco and let Henry win your heart! He won mine!! What a little snuggler...

Henry is estimated to be 9 years young and weighs 17 lbs.

Learn more here —> https://muttville.org/mutt/henry-6601

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Recognizing the joy of senior dog adoptions in San Francisco!

Thank you San Francisco Mayor London Breed for the new proclamation recognizing the positive influence of Muttville Senior Dog Rescue. June 6th is now Adopt a Senior Pet Day in San Francisco!

To celebrate this wonderful occasion, come down to Rescue Row on June 6, for a very special happy hour adoption event from 3PMto 6PM.  If weekends are better, Saturday, June 8th, Muttville is hosting an adoptathon with extended hours from 10AM to 4PM. (Details below)

muttville.org

“Muttville represents San Francisco values at their best!”

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Why dogs are adoptable and why we embraced the word ‘surrender’

We fell so hard in love with our adopted dog that within months of bringing her home, it felt like she had been with us forever. I remember staring at her wishing I had known her as a puppy. I dreamed up scenarios of her life before us. We exhaled in her presence, as if we’d been holding our breaths expecting her to disappear, as if she was too good to be true. She was about five years old and perfect. It took no time before it was clear she was the missing piece to our family puzzle. She plugged herself into our life and home completely and seamlessly. I pinched myself every time she walked into a room, or I walked in the front door and saw her big fluffy face.

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Owner surrender

Adoptable dogs become adoptable for a bunch of reasons. They are often picked up as strays. Sometimes their person passes away, or their family is moving somewhere and can’t take them and the dog is taken to a shelter or rescue. Many of the Muttville Senior Dog Rescue dogs were strays or surrendered for some reason.

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Discover why senior dogs rule and caring about dogs matter: Meet Ginger Rogers

Is it true that like attracts like? I do find myself pulled towards certain older dogs when I enter the doggy loft each week at Muttville. Sure, some are just so outwardly engaging that most dog people would notice them and respond. I certainly greet all the dogs with happy good mornings, followed by questions about their night. I try not to wake any who want to sleep in, or generally disturb any of the dogs who just don’t do mornings. Not everyone is perky first thing, and that includes dogs.

Spice Girl or Spicy Dog

There is a dog that has been with Muttville longer than usual who I find relatable in a million ways. She is what is called “spicy” or rather, she can snap at you if you’re not watchful. What I love about her is that I get it. I can relate to the desire to react negatively or at least guardedly to others. She’s wary, but at the same time I can see her desire to engage. I can see her body language trying to communicate that she wants to be pet, but just in a certain way and for a certain length of time. If those planets don’t align, then forget it.

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She needs to call the shots and that’s okay

I have a strong feeling that Ginger Rogers is a wonderful little dog who just needs someone who gets her. Someone who maybe has their own particular set of rules, therefore appreciates and respects hers. She needs someone who respects her individual nature but also appreciates it and will accommodate it...maybe even enjoy it. She needs patience. I used to enjoy seeing my big dog tell other people when they were doing something wrong. She told them when they weren’t petting her properly, or when they were too loud near her.

Ginger Rogers is a sweet old lady. I know she will find her person. I’m glad she has Muttville in her corner.

From Muttville:

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Do you have a social contract with your dog?

Before we adopted our first dog, I told my husband that having a dog, especially an older dog we didn’t know meant we were taking out a social contract with the dog. For me, choosing to bring a dog into my home and family is something I take serious, because I believe loyalty goes both ways.

People talk about what loyal companions dogs are but they deserve loyalty too. So when my husband was ready to have a dog, I made sure he understood what intentions would be and what my part in the relationship would look like. I explained that any adoption meant that I was agreeing emotionally, financially and spiritually to commit to this dog forever. Til death us do part. 

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And when we finally adopted our dog from the San Francisco SPCA, that night, I literally looked her in the eye and shook her paw, saying I will do my best to set her up for success and give her the best dog life she could have in the big city. I promised her that I would try to never let her down, to not take her for granted, and to appreciate her dog qualities, for as long as she gave us. We had nine incredible years together that I believe were made indelible because of this social contract.

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Tuesdays with Muttville 🐾 Senior Dog Adoptions at SF/SPCA Fillmore Campus

What a wonderful way to share space and get adorable adoptable senior sweethearts in front of potential new families. Spring has sprung with adorable adoptables!

Today begins weekly adoption events called, Tuesdays with Muttville Senior Dog Rescue at the Pacific Heights campus of the San Francisco SPCA. Stop by each week between 12 and 4pm, and discover why senior dogs really do rule!

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When: Tuesday, Mar 19, 12:00 - 4:00PM through April 9th

Where: SF SPCA Pacific Heights, 2243 Fillmore Street, San Francisco CA

Join Muttville at the SPCA Pacific Heights location for Tuesday adoption hours this spring! Come meet the mutts from 12-4PM on their Fillmore campus. Getting ready to fall in love with your new best friend!

More info: https://muttville.org/event/20190319-tuesdays-with-muttville-spca

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Discover why senior dogs rule when you fall in love with Smoochie!

When you think of having a personal cheer squad, this is the dog for you! He's the perfect wee man who makes you feel like the best thing since sliced bread. Look at how he holds your gaze confidently while looking very dashing in his warm fleece!

This little guy is a beautiful chocolate brown chihuahua who was brought into our local shelter as a stray – are you ready to give him his forever home!?

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Smoochie is cool with other dogs and enjoys meeting new human friends.

He’s got a great little pep in his step for your weekend adventures but is chill to just hang on your couch while you are at work all day.

Hurry and snap this little guy up, Muttville is estimating Smoochie to be about 9 years old and 7 pounds.

Fall in love with Smoochie at Muttville Senior Dog Rescue on Rescue Row in San Francisco!

Here’s what his foster has to say (Pssst be ready with the ahhhhhhhh):

Smoochie is an incredibly affectionate dog. He is most happy when there is a lap for him to sit on. If there is no lap available he is the king of finding or making nests in the cutest places. He loves a nice walk around the neighborhood as long as he doesn’t have to do it in the rain or through puddles! He is fine hanging out on his own at home, but will be very very happy when you return. His little tail will wag wildly and he’ll run to you barking his greeting.

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Adopt ♥️ Love! Reduced Adoption Fees for Chihuahuas at Muttville SF until March 1st

My first dog love was for a very large fluffy Samoyed. She was a senior sweetheart we took in from a family friend who was moving away. I spent more time on the oily ground of our carport playing with her than I did with any doll or toy. Fast forward to three years ago and the start of my weekly volunteer shifts with Muttville Senior Dog Rescue.

Thanks to weekly shifts with the sugar faces in the doggy loft on Rescue Row, I can say that little poodles, terriers and chihuahuas have won my heart a hundred times over! This affection I have developed for these wee dogs kind of surprised me because I have been a devout big dog lover my entire life, up until now.

We all know that it is to our detriment when we believe stereotypes, when we assume other people’s experiences are the only truth. Assuming the stereotypical picture parroted about chihuahuas is the absolute truth is no different. Not all chihuahuas bark a lot, shiver constantly, act territorial or bite everybody. It makes me very happy to report that I have met some of the cutest, softest, calmest chihuahuas since I began volunteering at Muttville.

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My Muttville Story About Adoptable Tag

What is it about big dogs that I love so easily? Is it their large body proportions? Their often out-sized personalities? This week when I met a new big shepherd-like boy at Muttville Senior Dog Rescue, all of my empathy responded to his presence.

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This dog came at me as soon as I entered the open doggy loft. He thrust his big plush head into my lap to say pet me. So I did. His thick fur was rich. I immediately smoothed his face and cleaned his eyes, telling him with my hands and expressions that he is loved, and in a safe place.

Some people get nervous when a big dog isn’t shy about telling you that they need and want you. This dog’s body language said he was open but wasn’t a pushover. He let me kiss his face, and enjoyed some cuddling but he wasn’t lazy about it. He seemed to orchestrate how you could engage with him, as if he was saying, “I want you to pet me, only right here, not there, and like this.”

He reminded me of when we first met our newly adopted dog. She was a big fluffy girl who acted very open and willing, but only to the untrained eye. In reality she was just showing you that her confidence in herself allowed people she barely knew to engage with her. But as we learned over time, she knew what she was doing and if you did something she didn’t like, you knew it.

Tag, the big shepherd boy, was showing me similar signs. What I hope to communicate to anyone interested in adding him to their home is this lesson. Trust him. Love him. Set him up for success, and he will be your fiercest buddy and confidante.

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My Muttville Mutt Story about Adoptable Franknfurter

One of the best things about spending time with dogs is the engagement. You get to figure out what they like to do, how they like to play, what makes them happy and want to hang out with you. At least that is how I approach every dog I encounter when I volunteer at Muttville Senior Dog Rescue.

My goal with every dog is to learn what makes them, them. To focus on them and what they are communicating with their noises, and body language. Playing with Franknfurter recently I learned what his kryptonite is — ear rubs!

I work at Muttville during the morning shift so I am there before most of the staff arrives. Today I was having a fun session in the lower office where Franknfurter was hanging out. We played and tossed his ball a little before breakfast then before he settled into his bowl of chow, I gave him a little ear rub “see you later” and he suddenly plopped down hard against my hand! It was so funny and suprising because HE LOVES BREAKFAST. I thought he’d already mentally moved on from me to his bowl, but guess what? He gave me extra minutes!! I felt like the biggest winner as I left his room and went to work on laundry.

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