So many of us grow up with a dog, and if we don’t, we sometimes found ourselves daydreaming about having one. Few, if any, of us daydreamed about the day we’d care for a handicapped pet who struggles with disabilities.
But things change. We grow older, and priorities and ideals shift as we mature. Maybe your family dog escaped the fence and was involved in an accident that rendered his hind legs useless. Perhaps he’s now paralyzed from the waist down. We love our pets; they’re valid members of our family. When a beloved family member needs help, we step up for them. The same is true for our pets. Did you know that if dear Pickles the Pekinese had such an accident that there are such things as dog wheelchairs for sale? Incredible, isn’t it?
Dogs with disabilities have just as much to offer families as those who do not have disabilities, if not more. Just because parts of their bodies are broken, it doesn’t then follow that their spirits are broken as well. Au contraire: their spirits are just as lively as ever! Imagine the life lessons your children can learn if they live in a home that loves and nurtures a handicapped pet. Better yet, what about children who are born with disabilities? Just think of the increased levels of emotional support they’d receive from having a pet who shared the same disability.
Veterans have also shown improvement when caring for a pet, even a pet with disabilities. The benefits are endless when it comes to the intrinsic rewards of caring for those in need.
If you or someone you know would like to adopt a handicapped pet, there are dozens of non-profit organizations looking to pair the right home with the right pet. Many of the foundations and rescue groups specialize in specific disabilities, so that they can optimize the care offered to the animals in their charge. If you already have a handicapped pet, there are even organizations out there whose mission it is to donate handicapped equipment to those in need.
Caring for a pet with disabilities comes with its own unique set of challenges, in addition to the standard challenges pet owners regularly face. It is vital for owners to follow a routine, consult specialists and prepare for the future. One of the most important aspects is obtaining the proper gear and learning how to use it. With the smorgasbord of tips and forums for owners of disabled pets, the endeavor is not without support.
If you are the owner of a disabled pet and would like to seek or even offer tips, contact us and we’ll reach out to you as soon as possible!