If you spend a few days at the animal shelter, you will quickly notice a common phenomenon – the older a dog, the more difficult it is for them to get adopted. Dogs who have already hit 4 or 5 find themselves without a chance of finding a home. Puppies are cute. No argument there. But they are fuzzy little tornadoes of destruction. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of owning a dog yourself, you know that it’s often much more satisfying to have an older dog who already knows where to do their business, no longer destroys everything in their path, and has settled into doggy life, than having a puppy. But unfortunately, not everyone knows that.
Mark Imhof volunteers at the Animal Care Centers of NYC, giving the older pups free baths and haircuts in the hopes that a makeover will find them their forever homes. Mark is an MBA who worked in strategic consulting until quite recently. It was his girlfriend who convinced him that he was in desperate need of a change in his life.
“She didn’t want to see me go for another soulless job, and she saw the joy I had when I interacted with our animals.”
So Mark enrolled in a pet grooming class and was looking for some clients to be able to practice his newly honed skills. And there was no one more deserving and more in need of his free services than those same old pups at the shelter.
Imhof’s goal was clear. He wanted to make sure the dogs looked their best so that people who came looking to adopt considered older animals as well.
“I have seen such transformations in almost all the dogs and it is so uplifting and I KNOW they will pay that love forward to their future forever homes.”
And as you can see in this next series of photos, the change that a single haircut can make is astronomical.
“Sean was my first shelter dog, and when they brought him to me, he was on the unadoptable list because of behavior issues,” says Imhof. “Of course, I explain to people, if we were to mat your hair, and then ask you to go do a job, you would probably have behavior issues too. So I worked through and he became the most adorable guy.”- Advertisement -
Mark and his fiance have three other older dogs that they’ve recently adopted. Two of them are abandoned pit bulls that no one wanted to adopt.
“I believe that the haircuts and the treatments that I give the dogs will help improve their chances of finding a home”
Here are a few more before and after photos of sweet dogs that have received treatment from Mark.
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