This post isn’t about butterflies nor wildlife, but I couldn’t resist posting a few new photos of Maggie, my 11 year old Golden Retriever.
The thing about Golden Retrievers is that they seem to prematurely age in their facial hair. Maggie has been no different. When she was younger she was a much darker color, almost a reddish-golden, but always with those soft brown eyes that could melt a person no matter how tough they are.
From what I have read, a Golden Retriever’s average lifespan is 10-12 years old, so Maggie is at the upper end of her lifespan. When I think about that it makes me sad. In some ways Maggie shows her age, she has some cataracts (she’s not blind), she’s had some teeth knocked out accidentally from Sascha (my German Shepherd), and last year she cracked one of her bottom canine teeth that had to be pulled. However, in other ways, Maggie acts like a much younger dog. She loves to take a toy out in the backyard and roll back and forth over her toy. When she is indoors, she will throw her toy in the air, catch it, then run to her bed and start pawing at it (I have no idea why she does this).
I’m hopeful Maggie has at least a good year or two left in her. She seems like a happy dog, and according to her recent vet visit, her health is great for an 11 year old dog. From the time Maggie was a puppy, she has always adored people and would prefer to be around people versus other dogs or animals. Maggie would be a horrendous guard dog, as she would welcome any stranger into the house, and rarely barks. She’s always been a submissive dog (which is a good thing with another female dog in the house), and if Sascha takes her toy, she will just go and grab another one. When Sascha takes that toy as well, then Maggie calmly goes to look for yet another toy. The one area where Maggie excels compared to Sascha, is in swimming. Maggie just floats across the water, calmly paddling wherever she wants to go. Never in a rush, just slowly paddling until she reaches the edge of the pool.
The pictures below are my tribute to Maggie. The temperature today was in the lower 60′s and that’s Maggie’s favorite temperature. Too hot, and she’d rather be indoors. Too cold, she’d also rather be indoors. But with temperatures in the 50′s to 60′s, Maggie will just stretch out in the yard, smelling all the different scents, intently watching whatever she can still see. And today, that’s exactly what Maggie was doing. Seeming to enjoy life, however long that may be.