When Luna’s owner entered hospice care at The Villages in Florida, the future was uncertain for the lonesome-eyed Staffordshire terrier-boxer mix. She was boarded at a local veterinary clinic and, when her owner died, put up for adoption. Luna found a new home with Peggy Maina, a 69-year-old retired special education teacher, who had searched through dozens of web listings for a dog to keep her company.
“She looked like an animal I could bond with,” recalls Maina, who lives at The Villages.
Cornerstone Hospice and Palliative Care, a local health care organization, arranged the adoption through its pet program, which is affiliated with Pet Peace of Mind, a national organization.
“Our goal is actually for all our patients to have a plan for their pet,” says Lisa Gray, the coordinator of the Cornerstone program. But when a plan isn’t in place, the program will try to find a new home for a dog or cat, sometimes by posting pet pictures on its Facebook page.
While there aren’t reliable statistics available, Luna’s story is all too common, according to animal welfare organizations.