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Local Elderdog chapter taking shape

TRURO – Greater help for seniors – both seniors with pets and senior pets – may soon be available in the Truro area.

Elderdog Canada.

More than 20 people recently met at the library to listen to Elderdog founder Dr. Ardra Cole speak about what the organization does and answer questions about how to set up a local "pawd."

Elderdog Canada formed in 2012 to help elderly dogs and elderly people who need assistance with their dogs.

"I ran into people from this group about two and a half years ago when they had a booth at a show and I've been waiting for them to migrate up this way," said Stephen Cooper, of Valley. "I'm definitely going to volunteer with this group. I've been rescuing dogs since I was five years old and I'm happy to help them."

Diane Redden, of Brookfield, was so interested in Elderdog she cancelled another appointment to attend the meeting.

"I'm really intrigued by the idea of helping two groups; the elderly populations of animals and people. We have a high number of older people in the area and there are probably quite a few who could use help.

Redden is already involved in dog rescue (Atlantic Canadian Dachshund Rescue) and believes in the cause.

"These little creatures are part of our families."

She feels Elderdog is a well-respected organization that treats people with respect.

During her presentation Cole told stories of some of the people and dogs they have been able to help. Sometimes it's been through rehoming pets when someone dies or goes into a care home; sometimes it is through walking or grooming dogs or it might be by providing comfort when a pet dies.

One couple needed help with giving their dog, Heidi, insulin injections. The man who was helping them adopted their dog when they went to live in a nursing home and he still takes the dog to visit them.

"They don't recognize him any more but they still know Heidi," said Cole.

Elderdog has more than 350 volunteers across Canada and has rehomed more than 110 dogs. The oldest dog placed in a new home was an 18-year-old Labrador retriever.

Four of the nine pawds in existence are in Nova Scotia - Halifax, Dartmouth, Lunenburg County and Kings County.

More information about Elderdog and volunteer opportunities within the organization can be found at .


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