Elderdog Canada: Honouring the Human-Animal Bond in the Lives of Aging People

ElderDog Canada is a national, community-based, non-profit organization. ElderDog is run by volunteers, whose work is dedicated to the well-being of older people and older dogs. They rely 100% on donations and fundraising, as there are no fees for any of their services.

ElderDog takes into account the many physical, emotional and social benefits of companion animals for older adults. They aim to keep older adults and their canine companions living together, for as long as possible, in mutually beneficial relationships.

ElderDog is unique in the type of dogs that they work with:

  • a typical dog is 10 years or older.
  • have experienced, or are about to experience a disruption in their lives due to a change in residence, human companion illness or death.
  • are typically considered “unadoptable” by animal shelters, due to age, mobility or state of health
  • may live with an elderly human companion who needs dog care assistance in order to stay together

Seniors that work with ElderDog:

  • typically reside at home with a canine companion
  • may face health and/or mobility challenges
  • have financial and/or physical challenges with providing routine daily care
  • may need to move to a short or long term care facility

Dog care support offered for seniors:

  • assistance with obtaining food, and feeding
  • assistance with animal hygiene
  • minor grooming such as nail trims or help with brushing
  • transportation to the vet or groomers
  • temporary care during hospitalization

For older dogs left without a caregiver, ElderDog provides care and companionship through:

  • foster care in an approved foster home
  • adoption to an approved home
  • helping with long term care planning

Our clinic recently had the chance to work with ElderDog in both a rehoming situation, and a fostering situation, and we were very impressed with the integrity of the organization. They truly embrace the goal of preserving the lives and dignity of canines who have served as companion animals.

For more information on this amazing organization, and for volunteer opportunities, please visit their website: elderdog.ca.

Written by: Dr. Katherine Takacs
Mission Ridge Animal Hospital