Yes, Dennett! Double poppycock! Triple poppycock! (though it took me awhile to be a believer)
When we don’t adopt because doing that would “make us sad,” our focus is on us, not on dogs (cats, rabbits, birds, horses . . .) who need us. And the old ones (“ugly” ones, sick ones, dying ones, crippled ones, terrified ones) are the ones who need us most.
Adopting an old dog, we honor our beloved old dog who passed. Waiting too long, we verge on dishonoring that dearly missed dog. So the sooner the better, I say.
Would that I recover soon enough (considering my age:) from a stroke to be able to welcome in another love.
Thanks for this much-needed, beautifully-written post, Dennett. May it reach — and move — many.