Here at Oldies Club, a small volunteer-run dog rescue registered charity, we have helped over 5,000 homeless old dogs in rescue to be discovered by new, loving families, thanks to our popular website.
Oldies Club is a friendly, helpful little dog rescue charity, and as well as rescuing and rehoming old dogs via our own rescue –- to date Oldies Club has rehomed 861 dogs –- we also promote old dogs that are in other rescues, by carefully crafting descriptions of them and publicising them on our much-loved website.
We are very proud to share the news that this week we have been analysing the figures and doing a little estimating based on the lovely feedback we receive from the hundreds of rescues we help, and the astounding conclusion we have reached is that in the 12 years since the Oldies Club website was created, we have actively helped a whopping 5,000 old dogs to find new homes. That’s 5,000 old dogs that have moved in with fabulous, kind-hearted families who had perused our website and spotted the special canine destined to be their new best friend. We are so chuffed about this revelation.
Let us explain how we get to the magical figure of 5,000…
Since our website began, twelve years ago, 10,000 of the dogs that we have listed went on to find a new home. And, based on the ongoing feedback our web team receives from contacts in all those rescues we help, it seems that between 60% and 70% of the dogs we list are rehomed as a direct result of being seen on our website. Allowing for a slightly lower percentage right back when the website began, we are confident to claim that at least 50% of the dogs we advertised that subsequently found a home, found that home because they were noticed on the Oldies Club website. Amazing!
But it gets even better than that, because rescues repeatedly tell us that as well as the actual dogs we have advertised for them, they also gain interest in their other dogs, and they often rehome another dog or two, or three, because people got in touch with their rescue after seeing one of their oldies on our website. How wonderful is that?
Oldies Club’s web team consists of seven dog-mad volunteers who spend their spare time writing about dogs they have never met, probably never will meet, and yet, after writing about each old dog’s plight and how it came to be in rescue in its twilight years, we feel we know so well. The rescues we work with send information about the oldies in their care that they would like us to promote, but often we need to dig a bit deeper to get that extra nugget of information that will help the oldie find a home. We sometimes ask for more photos to try to ensure each oldie looks its best. Or we might ask if the oldie would be happy to live with cats, dogs, or children, or if it is good in the car. All those extra little bits of information might be just the must-have feature that someone is looking for in their new dog. We also use our personal experience of adopting and living with our own old dogs to help us present oldies in a positive light, to give each oldie the best chance of finding that elusive new home.
Feedback such as this from one of the rescues whose oldies we regularly list is what makes it all worthwhile: “Just wanted to send a special thank you for promoting our little girl. You wouldn’t believe but we have been absolutely inundated with offers, the phone hasn’t stopped ringing and I have had lots of emails. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Oldies Club ALWAYS helps our Oldies and we don’t know what we would do without you lovely people.”
And we often receive comments such as this recent one: “I can honestly say that most of our older dogs have found homes through your organisation. We could not be doing this job without you. We monitor where the enquiries come from, so I can say this with certainty. Thank you for everything.”
We had 423,000 unique visitors to our website in the year to 14 October 2017, and that figure just keeps on growing. Our loyal supporters often tell us that they love reading our website, even when they aren’t actively looking for a dog. And we surely are the go-to resource for anyone that is actively searching for a grey-muzzled canine to add to their family. At any one time, there are around 200 oldies for adoption on our website. That’s a lot of old dogs waiting for their chance of happiness.
Our Old Dog of the Week feature has had some spectactular results in helping overlooked oldies finally find their forever home. A particularly memorable early success of this feature was little Basil who was thought to be a difficult dog, but once in a home proved to be a little charmer. More recent examples are Mallie a 12 year old Staffy who was becoming very depressed in kennels, Syd who didn’t like you to leave him, Paddy an American Bulldog who eventually found a home with 18 acres of land, Tilly who was very stressed in kennels, Jen an overlooked Rottie who just needed some fresh photos and a bit more information to get her noticed, and Shelley the German Shepherd who we mentioned could be long-term fostered and that’s what finally secured a home for her. These are dogs that waited months, or even years, in rescue, but finally found a home after being featured with new photos and extra information from their rescue.
We would like to end with a HUGE “thank you!” to everyone that has used our website to look for an oldie to adopt, and especially to those helpful people that share the details of the oldies we list, spreading the word about the fabulous old dogs that are waiting in rescues for someone special to find them and take them home. With your continued help and support, we can help thousands more oldies.