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Adrian Lott, 31, and Spencer Erickson, 32, do not have your average dog family. Now, they are on a heartfelt mission to inspire people to rescue and adopt senior dogs, and their story is nothing short of heartwarming and inspiring. Their journey began when they brought home an elderly poodle named Emma, and their lives were forever changed.

In a heartwarming Instagram video that has garnered more than 144,000 views, Adrian and Spencer shared their remarkable experience with Emma, a frail geriatric poodle they rescued from a local shelter in February 2022. At the time, Emma’s condition was dire, covered in mats and urine burns, and she appeared fragile beyond belief. The couple admitted they weren’t expecting Emma to be with them for long but decided to bring her home to offer her love and comfort.

Emma’s story is a testament to the transformative power of love and care. When Adrian and Spencer brought her home, they were faced with the reality of her age, as she was a fragile 14-year-old dog weighing just three pounds, even after her matted fur had been shaved off. Emma also required extensive dental work, which presented further challenges.

Despite the odds stacked against her, Emma’s spirit shone through. During her dental work, her tiny jaw broke, adding to the challenges she faced. However, the shelter and her foster caregivers agreed that it was best for her to go to her forever home, despite her fragile state.

Spencer shared a poignant moment from those early days with Emma: “She was so shaky at the beginning, even wearing a sweater and wrapped in a blanket. I was holding her, and I lightly rubbed her head—she immediately stopped shaking and looked up at me. We made eye contact, and in that moment, I think she knew she was home.”

But Emma is not the only senior dog whose life has been forever changed by Adrian and Spencer. The couple has also opened their hearts and home to other senior dogs in need, including Eugene, a 15-year-old German shorthaired pointer, Gus, a ten-year-old Chihuahua, Millie, a seven-year-old mutt mix, and Teddy, a five-year-old cocker spaniel/poodle mix. Their love knows no bounds, and their home has become a sanctuary for these aging canines.

To those hesitant about giving a senior dog a loving home, Spencer Erickson has a powerful message: “You have a choice. You can either choose to avoid grieving their death and pass them by. Or, you can choose to know them, love them, and send them off surrounded with love and happiness. I choose the pain of losing them over never loving them at all.”

We encourage everyone thinking of getting a pet to only adopt instead of shopping. Read more resources about adopting animals on One Green Planet, including 7 Reasons to Adopt Your Next Furry Best Friend5 Reasons Why Everyone Should Adopt a Pet, and These Heartwarming Before and After Pictures of Adopted Rescue Animals Will Make Your Day! Read tips for pet adoptions and what to consider before adopting an animal. We recommend using these apps to find shelter dogs near you!

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