Senior dog is thriving with 2 octogenarians

Watson the dog lying on a couch
Linda and Bill Farrell took one look at Watson’s silver-threaded muzzle and knew he was the dog for them.
By Rachel Blake

After Linda and Bill Farrell’s beloved dog passed away, they were heartbroken. When Linda told her friend that she missed sharing life with a canine companion, her friend thought for a moment and then offered a suggestion: Why not adopt a dog again? Or, more specifically, why not adopt a senior dog who could spend their golden years in a home, rather than in a shelter?

[8 reasons to adopt a senior pet]

Linda loved the idea. Bill did, too. As octogenarians themselves, they could easily see themselves with a sweet, senior pup by their sides. So one evening, Linda visited Best Friends’ website, honed in on the adorable gray faces, and set her intent on filling a senior dog’s life with love.

A loving, affectionate dog

Watson came to Best Friends in Northwest Arkansas from the Lester C. Howick Animal Shelter in nearby Fayetteville. According to Julie Greer, Best Friends lifesaving specialist, Watson’s time at Best Friends was good for him — he broke out of his shell and was able just to be himself. He also had an amazing foster family, who showed him unconditional love and patience.

It didn’t take long for the team at Best Friends to see that Watson was very loving, affectionate, smart, and full of life. He’s also very playful, and when given a toy (especially chew toys that make noise) he acts like a young pup again.

Determined adopters

When Linda saw Watson during her online search, she couldn’t get his soft brown eyes, white muzzle, and white “gloves” out of her mind. As Linda says, “He was the one. Period.”

Linda and Bill called Best Friends and set up a meet and greet with Watson. They didn’t know it at the time, but meeting the sweet, white-faced boy in person would prove to be a bit of a challenge. The person fostering Watson got sick and had to reschedule the meet and greet twice. But the Farrells were patient and determined. They set up another meeting, and when the day came, they went to Best Friends bright and early.

Comfort, joy, and dog crushes

As soon as Linda and Bill met Watson in person, they fell even more in love with him. During the meet and greet, they took turns letting Watson “walk them,” as Linda likes to say, and got to know him a bit. Just about an hour after meeting Watson for the first time, Linda and Bill took Watson home to join their family.

As they all settled into their new life together, Watson quickly made himself at home, where he’s been thoroughly enjoying his days ever since. Now, Watson has toys to play with all over the house and yard. He’s even slept in the Farrells’ bed ever since he arrived. Although Linda says he’s a bit of a bed hog, she wouldn’t have it any other way.

[Old dog is a diamond in the rough]

While Watson is their only pet, he loves making new dog friends and has even developed a bit of a crush on their neighbor’s dog, Barley. The Farrells have plans to take him to doggie daycare, so he can play with other dogs and get to know Barley better, too.

Now, Linda says she and Bill are so happy to share their home with a senior companion. “He offers us love, loyalty, and the best comfort of all — peace.”

Be a light for senior pets

Mature pets like Watson have a deep appreciation for the simple things and come ready-made for your companionship.

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