The fourth Saturday in October, this year Oct. 27, marks a national day of volunteering. Originally created by USA Weekend Magazine, the holiday brings millions of community members around the country together to perform works of service.
Hoffman Estates Animal Hospital and the South Barrington Park District are collaborating to serve Young at Heart Pet Rescue, a rescue mission dedicated to re-homing senior dogs and cats.
“Young at Heart is passionate about educating people about this very special group of pets that most families don't consider when adopting. Choosing them to benefit from the food drive just seemed like the right thing to do.” said Martie Wartalski, Practice Manager at Hoffman Estates Animal Hospital.
Young at Heart focuses their efforts primarily on care and education regarding senior pets. The food drive benefits the senior pet foster parents that work with Young at Heart
Baskets have been set up to collect unopened canned pet food at the South Barrington Park District, the South Barrington Club, and the animal hospital. Donations will be accepted at these three locations. Once the cans have been collected the senior pet foster parents will be able to use the donations to help feed their foster animals.
“Supporting an organization dedicated to the care of these senior pets is very rewarding,” said Dr. House, owner of Hoffman Estates Animal Hospital.
Senior pets hold a special place in the hearts of the staff at Hoffman Estates Animal Hospital.
“We've been doing our Senior Pet Work Up for over ten years and it's a very special part of what we offer for our patients,” said Wartalski.
Senior status is given to pets eight years old and up. Once pets reach that age, Dr. House notes, it is important they make regular trips to the veterinarian. Senior pets are more prone to illness. Early detection is key in preventing illnesses from claiming the lives of senior pets.
Young at Heart provides medical care to neglected or abused senior pets, rehabilitates hard-to-adopt senior pets, and educates the public on the benefits of owning an older animal.
“Senior pets are loving animals that have special bonds with their owners. Often times they are overlooked at adoption agencies because of their old age, but sometimes a mellow and loyal pet is the best kind a family could adopt,” Dr. House said.
Through work such as Young at Heart’s, countless of loving animals have been placed in loving homes.
“ After hearing about Young at Heart, we felt that collecting food donations to help the foster parents would be the best way that we could help. We were excited to partner with the South Barrington Park District and the South Barrington Club in this effort,” said Wartalski.