This ‘teddy bear face’ senior dog can’t comprehend why he has been brought back to the shelter on seven occasions

Cute and adorable dogs are often the top picks for adoption at shelters because people love them. However, Martin, a senior dog at the SPCA of Wake County, hasn’t had the same fortune. Martin’s previous owner, who was also a senior, surrendered him because he could no longer provide adequate care for Martin in his old age.

“His [dad] was 89 years old and reached a point where he couldn’t provide the life that he felt Martin deserved,” Samantha Ranlet, marketing communications specialist at SPCA, told The Dodo. “He wanted a better life for him.”

While it is a sorrowful reason, it was a valid one. Martin is now an older dog and requires proper care and attention. It was also the wish of his previous owner that Martin finds a new home where he can live out his remaining days in comfort. Interestingly, it appears that Martin understands his former dad’s decision.

“He adjusted pretty well,” Ranlet said. “I don’t know if he understood what was going on, but even from day one, he was just this happy, easy-going, really sweet old man with a teddy bear face.”

Regrettably, Martin has not had favorable experiences with his adoptive families. Despite being adopted multiple times, he has been returned to the shelter on seven occasions within the last two months alone. Senior dogs, such as Martin, require extra care and attention which may have become apparent to his previous adopters after bringing him home. Additionally, Martin has been diagnosed with heartworm, which can further complicate his care. Despite these challenges, the shelter staff remains committed to finding Martin a forever home and believe that his perfect family is out there.

Consequently, the shelter took the next best course of action by promoting Martin on their Facebook page to find a new family for him.

“Martin really is the bestest boy. His former owner said he is extremely gentle, especially with kids — Martin used [to] cuddle up with their grandkids so they could lie their heads on him for a nap. He’s great with people of all ages, including seniors, gets along with dogs of all sizes and energy levels, and is housetrained and crate-trained. Martin is a bit hard of hearing (he’s 10 years old), but he still knows some tricks and loves being rewarded with treats,” they wrote on their Facebook post.

Guess what? It was a success! The post became a sensation and garnered nearly 3,000 shares. Consequently, within 48 hours, the adoption request for Martin reached its maximum limit. Among these requests, a couple who had experience caring for older canines applied to adopt him.

“They weren’t afraid of his age and they weren’t afraid of the fact that he had heartworm disease,” Ranlet shared. “They just fell in love with him and his teddy bear energy.”

Interestingly, the post resulted in Martin gaining significant popularity.

“…right after Martin’s family left the SPCA and took him down to the pet store, the pet store employees recognized him immediately and said, ‘Is that Martin?!’”. The SPCA of Wake County shared on their Facebook page.

While the SPCA of Wake County staff misses Martin every day, they are immensely thankful and overjoyed that he has finally found his forever home.