A Woman Transforms Her Home Into a Sanctuary for Senior Dogs to Live Their Best Final Days

A Woman Transforms Her Home Into a Sanctuary for Senior Dogs to Live Their Best Final Days


The Whispering Willows Senior Dog Sanctuary has been offering a loving home where senior dogs would see out their last years, surrounded by love, happiness, and friends. Valerie, the owner of the sanctuary, shares the sweetest photos of the sweetest elderly dogs that you’ll see, aiming to show that even old dogs deserve the best care.

Bright Side truly loves a feel-good story that makes sure our beloved pets are taken care of and receive all the love they deserve. This is why we wanted to introduce you to the incredible work Valerie and her rescue are doing!

1. The Whispering Willows sanctuary had a curious beginning.

The Whispering Willows sanctuary was established in April 2017 inspired by a kind act of a stranger. After Valerie’s father’s passing, he left behind the dog that helped him through years of treatment and was by his side until the very end, a Doberman named Staley.

2. Looking for a home for Staley showed Valerie how important the job of foster dog owners was.

Valerie’s mom couldn’t keep Staley as she was dealing with other health issues, and Valerie herself couldn’t keep her either because of Kansas City’s pet limit restrictions. Valerie had been calling rescues, friends, and families and nobody would take the dog.

3. Valerie kept her hope that someone would offer a home for Staley.

Even breed-specific rescues wouldn’t take her due to Staley’s old age. Despite the situation looking bleak, Valerie kept hope, and it had worked out. A foster at a Doberman rescue heard about Staley, and she called Valerie, offering to help.

4. Staley’s last years were full of happiness, which inspired Valerie.

Staley lived for another year and a half on a farm, surrounded by other Dobermans and by love. She lived the last years of her life joyfully and was taken good care of. Valerie was touched by the act of kindness the woman who had taken Staley in had shown her, and she was inspired to give back.

5. The idea for Whispering Willows was conceived.

Led by the desire to help other dogs and knowing that her dad would’ve been proud, Valerie created the Whispering Willows sanctuary for senior dogs who had lost their owners or had been displaced. “They deserve just as much of a peaceful ending as anyone else,” Valerie says.

6. Valerie’s dream has helped many dogs feel love for the first time.

The rescue specializes in end-of-life hospice care for seniors that have a short time to live, allowing some to experience love for the very first time. Since starting the sanctuary, Whispering Willows has been able to offer full-time care for over 600 senior dogs.

Which one of these sweet dogs gave you the biggest smile? We would love to know! And if you can’t get enough, feel free to check out Valerie’s Instagram account as well.


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