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Woman, 96, adopts 17-year-old dog: ‘I knew straight away he was the one for me

After his previous owner died, a 97-year-old woman acquired a 17-year-old Jack Russell.

Marjory, from Durham, and the appropriately named Jack had both recently suffered a loss, since her former dog died just before lockdown last year. Marjory knew Jack was the dog she wanted to adopt the moment she spotted him on the Dogs Trust website.

‘Unfortunately, I lost my previous dog soon before lockdown in 2020, and the house has seemed so empty ever since,’ she said. I’ve had dogs my entire life, so when I saw Jack on the Dogs Trust website, I knew he was the one for me. 

‘When I found out how old Jack was, it made me even more determined to find him a home because I couldn’t stand the thought of him spending the rest of his life in kennels.’ He is a very calm dog that like to go at his own pace, which suits me perfectly. I enjoy going for walks with him because he does not pull on the leash and even stays by my side when he is not on the leash.

‘I would recommend that anyone considering about adopting a dog consider an older dog.’ They have a lot of personality and are more likely to adjust in a new home if, like Jack, they have lived the most of their existence as a member of a family.

The lockdown has raised demand for pups and dogs, with prices for popular breeds rising since the pandemic began.

In the nine months preceding up to the end of March, nearly half of those wishing to adopt a dog from Dogs Trust were explicitly looking for a furry pal under six months old, compared to only 5% seeking for a dog aged eight or older.

As a result, Dogs Trust Darlington encourages individuals considering adopting a dog to think about welcome an elderly citizen into their home. ‘In the previous year, so many families have wished to welcome a puppy into their family, but as Jack has demonstrated, older dogs also make excellent companions,’ said Sue Embleton, Rehoming Centre Manager at Dogs Trust Darlington.

‘Right now, almost 20% of the dogs at Dogs Trust Darlington that are ready to find their forever homes are above the age of eight, and we would love to find them their perfect families.’ Older dogs are frequently quieter and less energetic, so while they may still be playful and enjoy a stroll through the park, hiking up hills may be a thing of the past for them, which suits certain owners, young and old.