Joan’s Journey: Planning is Key to Senior-Pet Ownership

Welcome Joan’s Journeyers. More often than I care to watch, I see television infomercials showing abused and neglected domestic pets. These commercials bring near-tears to my eyes and pain in my heart. Fortunately, however, I have never personally witnessed animal abuse. However, since moving to a senior living community, I am aware of unintentional pet neglect despite the best intentions of everyone involved.

Renee, my floor neighbor and first friend at Holiday Villa EAST in Santa Monica,  admired Heather, a kitten I rescued from a cattery. A few months later, Renee rescued a kitten of her own. Renee and Tova bonded and became best buddies. Shortly thereafter, Renee became ill, was hospitalized and died suddenly and unexpectedly. Renee’s son lives overseas and her grandchild lives in another U.S. city.

Her Mommy sadly gone, Tova was alone in Renee’s unit with no one prearranged to care for her. Kind residents and a caring aide quickly responded to ensure that Tova had the basics of food, water, kitty litter and brief human companionship. Sill, it took weeks to find a new home for the kitten. One rehoming failed and Tova was returned to Renee’s room. Finally, in what seemed like forever to the pet-loving residents of our senior living community, our lonely feline found a home. Because she was still a kitten, she was more adoptable than a senior cat.

Learn more about why Joan says seniors who own pets should plan ahead to ensure their pets receive will care should the unexpected happen in Joan’s Journey, Part 34.

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