The 53-year-old tortoise that found a new home ShaunWilkinson

The coronavirus has wreaked havoc on the world. The terrible pandemic has caused so many people to fall sick and die, for those who survive the pandemic it may become the defining moment of our generation. As well as the huge health crisis, the disease has caused economic difficulties for many, ruined plans, and resulted in a lot of nights in for those who have been through quarantines or lockdowns. The longest impact will likely be on air travel which may take years to return to normality. One area that is also being severely impacted is the lives of pets, something not as focused on in the media.

Many people who pass away from the virus have pets who are left without owners. Even those who are sick but are fortunate to survive may not be able to look after their pets during this time. Others still rely on the help and kindness of their neighbor’s family and friends to care for pets and during this time may be unable to rely on that help. From a financial perspective, many people are no longer able to afford to look after their pets. All of these factors mean that many animal shelters are facing increases in animals being abandoned. 

It is a tough time for shelters but in one of the many positive stories during this pandemic, people have responded brilliantly. While there has been a huge increase in animals who have been left at the shelter there has also been an increase in animal adoptions as those who see the pressure being put on the world are helping out in any way that they can. Of course, some people who have been under lockdown and quarantine are also feeling lonely and may take this opportunity to adopt that pet they have always wanted. This is fantastic as long as they understand the commitment they are undertaking.

One of the best stories that have emerged is about Ms. Jennifer. Ms. Jennifer is a 53-year-old tortoise and sadly her owner passed away by contracting the coronavirus. Ms. Jennifer was left without a home. In mid-May, the MSPCA shared a post about this lovely old tortoise asking for someone to adopt. Weighing in at just four pounds the post described her as the perfect pet. Ms. Jennifer in her old age moves a little slower, even for a tortoise, so offers very little energy to look after, except to show her some love, affection, clean her habitat and ensure she is fed regularly.

The post was met with an incredible reception. It was liked and shared many times and in the end, 3,000 applied to adopt Ms. Jennifer. While at the shelter Ms. Jennifer celebrated her birthday and was well looked after but it was a permanent home that she needed. Due to the number of applications that the team received they were able to find the perfect new owner. Someone who is actually a tortoise expert!

As Ms.Jennifer is likely to grow to be over 100 years old it was important to find the perfect owner for her. Someone who could look after her for the rest of her life but also someone who could show her the same love and affection that she had been shown for the previous 58 years. 

Ms. Jennifer is particularly fond of dandelions and her previous owner would bring her on all of her errands to show her off to friends. Since her adoption, the new owner has already shared numerous photos of Ms. Jennifer continuing to enjoy life and more than a few dandelions. It is clear that all has ended well for Ms. Jennifer. It is a fantastically positive story at a time when we need all the positive stories we can get.