Senior Sanctuary Looks After the Most Vulnerable Rescue Pets

Cherished Tails Senior Sanctuary is a 501(c)3, all-volunteer, foster-based rescue group in Marana, Arizona, that rescues senior shelter dogs at high risk of euthanasia due to age, illness, or behavior. The group keeps the animals until they’re able to find forever homes or hospice care for them. The work they perform is so valuable because so many people consider animals like these unadoptable. Together, CTSS has been able to save more than 1,000 pets since its inception, which — all things considered — speaks volumes. ​


Founded in 2017, CTSS also provides what’s called “fospice” care for those that are too advanced in age or have medical or behavioral conditions that preclude them from finding stable housing in most cases. With a network of more than 45 foster homes that care for dogs short-term or long-term, depending on their specific needs, the rescue serves a frequently-overlooked segment of the community.

senior dog
Photo: Cherished Tails Senior Sanctuary

Cherished Tomorrows

In the summer of 2021, they began a new program called Cherished Tomorrows to serve younger dogs at risk due to space in one of their rural local “border” shelters. Since recruiting fosters to specifically help these pups, they have been able to save more than 50 dogs under the age of 5 who would have been euthanized otherwise.

Cherished Tails Website

With a recently updated website, visitors can find both seniors and puppies for adoption through Rescue Me or Pet Finders. In order to up the chances of adoption, they regularly hold events and take part in those hosted by animal welfare folks within the rescue community.

Photo: Cherished Tails Senior Sanctuary

Optimus Prime

Optimus came to the rescue 2.5 years ago and was adopted but now needs to find a new home again. He is a sweet yet shy guy who might prefer women. He would likely do best in a relatively quiet home, though he did grow up with children. He can be a little defensive when he first meets new people and dogs, but once he gets to know them, he is a TOTAL love bug and is really fun and loyal.

He has good house manners and is potty trained and leash trained and does fine in a crate. He also loves going on walks! One of their younger pups, Optimus is only about 7 years old and weighs approximately 10 pounds. If you or someone you know might be interested in adopting Optimus, fill out the application: or call 520-616-0171.

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