Elder Paws Senior Dog Rescue

Elder Paws Senior Dog Rescue is a 501(c)(3) non profit California organization dedicated to reducing the euthanasia of dogs 7 years and older in overcrowded kill shelters based on age and age related health conditions.  All donations are tax deductible.


Senior dogs are seen as less adoptable and are often first to be “red listed” (placed on euthanasia list) to make room for younger, healthier, more adoptable dogs.


Elder Paws believe that all dogs have value, regardless of age or health.  Growing old should not be punishable by death!  We are a foster-home-based rescue rather than a shelter or facility.  We act solely as a resource for city and county kill shelters seeking to find rescue for “red listed” seniors in their shelter.


Each of our seniors receives the veterinary care necessary to restore their health and provide them with the best possible opportunity for a quality life.  Veterinary care for senior dogs can be very expensive as compared to their younger counterparts, typically as a result of years of neglect.  We rely completely on donations and fundraising efforts to continue to save lives.  Each of our seniors is placed in a loving foster home to provide them with the family experience they are used to and to monitor their habits, characteristics, and “quirks” so as to better inform potential adopters.


Because senior dogs are calmer, less active, and typically trained they make great companions for senior citizens, the physically challenged, and anyone looking for a low maintenance pet that will not require extensive amounts of time to train or exercise.


Elder Paws believes strongly in education and we take part in community outreach events to provide pet owners and potential pet owners with important information and community resources needed for the responsible care of dogs age 7 and older.


Our Adoption Process


Many adopters come to us wanting to adopt after seeing a picture of one of our seniors online either at our website or at petfinder.com. And while they may be adorable the “cuteness” factor does not always mean that the dog is right for your family or your lifestyle. In an effort to ensure successful adoptions and prevent the confusion to the dog of being returned we have developed the following adoption process:


Our adoption process begins with downloading our Adoption Application from our website, filling it out, and returning it by email or U.S. mail to address under the “Contact Us” link. Once we receive your application we will call and do a phone interview with you and discuss your Adoption Application and the dog you are interested in adopting. Following the phone interview we ask that you come down to one of our two monthly adoption events (listed on our “Events” page) with all family members and your pets (if possible) to meet your potential new family member and spend some time with them to make sure it is a good fit for both humans and pets in the household. The final step in the adoption process will be scheduling a home inspection to check for safety issues for the dog. Once the home inspection is finished we will have you come to the next adoption event and pick up your new family member and take them home. We have found that following the above adoption process reduces adoption returns for poor fit and prevents confusion for the dog in being returned. Working together we can ensure that your new family member is right for you and your household!


Adopting a senior dog you have never met can be challenging. Would you adopt a 10 year old child you had never met? So while our seniors are available for adoption within the State of California the above adoption process is the same for all adopters. We feel it is in the best interest of both the dog and the potential new family to meet and spend some time together before finalizing the adoption.




How can you help Elder Paws?


1.  Adopt a senior dog…senior dogs make great low maintenance companions.  And everything has already been done for you before you take home your new best friend! Elder Paws makes every attempt to match senior dogs with the right forever home based on breed and lifestyle.  Our adoption process includes a home inspection, a sleep over, and follow up support calls after the adoption is complete.  If you have room in your heart and your home for a senior dog please consider adopting one of our sensational seniors.


2.  Foster…since all of our seniors need a place to go once they are “sprung” from the shelter fostering is critical in saving the lives of our old souls.  Fostering a senior is extremely rewarding and much easier than fostering a younger dog.  To hear what those who foster seniors have to say about the experience check out the “fostering” link in the drop down menu under the “senior dogs” link above.


3.  Donate…senior dogs cost considerably more to treat often due to years of neglect in their previous home.  The average cost spent to treat our seniors is $500, sometimes more.  We rely entirely on the generosity of those who donate, as well as fundraising efforts (see our “fundraising” page) to cover the cost of these expenses and provide our seniors with a 2nd chance at life.  Options are available for a one-time donation or a monthly donation, and are tax deductible.


4.  Volunteer…Elder Paws holds adoption events twice a month, in Fresno, CA and Clovis, CA, throughout the year to bring awareness to our seniors and help in finding them quality, loving forever homes.  We participate in educational outreach events several times a year; and we hold annual fundraising events to bring in much needed funding.  All this is not possible without the help of a dedicated team of volunteers.  We are looking for volunteers in all phases of rescue, including those who can make telephone calls or transport seniors to and from vet visits.  If you would like to volunteer we are happy to plug you in somewhere or create a special volunteer opportunity for you!


5.  Board Members…we are always looking to add committed members to our Board of Directors.  Our Board Members play a key role in working collectively to steer the direction of our organization towards it mission of saving the lives of old souls.  If you have an hour or two quartery (every 3 months) and would like to have a powerful voice in shaping and growing our unique non profit organization within the community we encourage you to check into becoming a Board Member.




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