Valerie Reid couldn’t handle the thought of senior dogs dying alone.

Feb 20, 2022 | Dog Blog


Several years ago, Valerie’s own father was passing from cancer. He had a senior Doberman that would be left alone and needed a home. Valerie realized it would be difficult to find a loving home for an elderly pet like her father’s old Doberman. This brought awareness about the need for senior dog care, and Valerie’s dream, Whispering Willows Senior Dog Sanctuary, was born.

A Place Where a Senior Dog Can Spend Their Last Days Surrounded by Love and Care

Located in Hickory County in Hermitage, Missouri, Whispering Willows Senior Dog Sanctuary uses the byline, “Where love is whispered to the last breath….” It is a place where an abandoned or senior dog can find not only shelter and medical care but most of all love for the remaining years of their life.

An End of Life Hospice for Senior Dogs

The sanctuary specializes in end-of-life hospice care for seniors that have a short time to live. It is a special place where, after losing its caregiver, a dog will experience love for the first time. In fact, many seniors at the sanctuary have responded to the love and caring with dramatic healing. The sanctuary becomes a family for the dogs. Dogs are pack animals. They do not do well alone. Whispering Willows gives these beautiful animals a pack where they can feel they belong.

Love Through Caring

The sanctuary has a veterinary team through local veterinarians at Lake Hills Veterinary Clinic. Dr. Kunz visits Whispering Willows several times a year to assist with the overwhelming need for senior and end of life care.

Love Whispered to Their Last Breath

Since starting, the sanctuary has offered complete time care for over 600 senior dogs. Over 550 of those seniors have passed, spending the final days of their life surrounded by love whispered to their last breath.