Golden Hearts’ Pet Support Program first member Neil Andersen and his dog Lilly enjoying the seniors’ pet support program’s first birthday celebrations.

Laughter and tears of joy this week as more than 60 guests and members celebrated the first birthday of Golden Hearts Senior Pet Support program, an Animal Welfare League Queensland (AWLQ) concept especially designed for seniors.

“It was incredibly heartwarming to see the smiling, happy faces, to hear their own stories and even meet the dogs they adopted through us,” AWLQ President Sylvana Wenderhold said.“This is a lifechanging experience for many of them and will give them, and the dogs or cats they adopted.

“We look forward to many more years of this program and wanted to celebrate with the original members.

Golden Hearts’ member Vivianne Clarkson and her AWLQ adopted dog Polly.

Golden Hearts’ members and supporters enjoying the birthday celebrations at AWLQ’s Rehoming Centre at Coombabah

The Golden Hearts Senior Pet Support program is designed for people aged 65 or older who would like to have the companionship of a cat or dog.

Free to join, Golden Hearts provides support with adoption, vet bills, short-term emergency pet accommodation if the owner becomes ill, or the rehoming of that best friend should the owner need to go into care, or sadly passes away.

Joan Cross and Tess united through the Golden Hearts’ Pet Support Program.

“Golden Hearts delivers peace of mind for people who may be concerned about the cost of owning a companion animal, or what could happen to them if they get sick, or worse,” Ms Wenderhold said.

“We will ensure that their companion animal is cared for.

“It benefits the senior but also helps provide loving homes for the 9,600 surrendered and abandoned animals Animal Welfare League Queensland rehomed last year alone.”

Elvy Jacobson enjoying a Magnum during the Golden Hearts birthday celebrations.

For John Alexander, who required emergency treatment in June, Golden Hearts’ Short Term Emergency Pet care service was invaluable.

John Alexander and Amy who required the Short Term Emergency Program (S.T.E.P.S.) after John became critically ill.

“I could relax in hospital knowing that my dog Amy was being cared for and was safe,” he said.

If you would like more information on the Golden Hearts Senior Pet Support program head to the website –