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Dog Decades

I am an avid horse lover and career horse woman. I’m in love with all animals. However, evidence indicates that I choose dogs as my daily companions. I am close to six decades old, 57 to be exact, and a dog-loving human to my core. 

Most life is measured in years but maybe our lives are worth measuring in a different way.

The life span of a dog according to a recent Google search is 10-13 years. 10-13 years of love, adoration and fierce loyalty. Now I recognize that not ALL humans are dog lovers, but I think most will appreciate and be able to connect with the following logic:

A brief history for explanations sake, I grew up on a farm. We had family dogs that were let in and out of the house but not typically allowed in bedrooms, living rooms, etc. They stayed in our kitchen and large entry way. My young years were filled with DeeDee, Larick, Sunshine, Jenny and McDuff, each with their own stories. Childhood, a blur of big memories, held trauma and built resilience.

The PUPPY YEARS = Human years 17. 

The PEKKA YEARS = Human years 3. I was a young adult, caught in PTSD with no knowledge of it, and trying to fit in like a square into a round hole. As a questionably wise college graduation gift my parents gave me an eight-week-old Jack Russell terrier who, FYI, I was 100% not capable of taking care of myself. But in that moment, he was a dream come true. Pekka traveled with me all over the summer after graduation and moved into a small rental cabin I shared with a then boyfriend. After that relationship cratered, I moved back in with my parents. Shortly after, he was run over at the farm. I sobbed for days, wrote volumes in my journal and still see that super cute little pup by my side.

The CHELSEA YEARS - human years 21. These years held marriage, divorce, exploration and growth in my career. Chelsea was a dog we all should have. She came somehow "pre trained" as a puppy. I did nothing and she read my every move until she could not...age 21. I swear I still feel her presence by my side.

The DUSTY YEARS = human years 8. In 2006 I was gifted Dusty, a yorkie/pom cross. He was the subject of a recent blog post. A challenging (to say the least) companion who led the way, "founding" Dusty Dog Farm. He still holds the hearts of many, all rodents are grateful he is gone and a smile crosses my face as I write this.

Coco and Me

The COCO YEARS - human years 8. COCO MANDELA MALEGATI ANDALA  came to me during the Dusty years, and he leads the path now. Just ask anyone visiting the farm...who greets you first? His life has seen my path of healing, spiritual growth, the growth of Dusty Dog and the foundation of Cooper's Crossroad.

So really, I am in my 5th Dog Decade.

Do you have your own Dog Decades?

With gratitude for aging,


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