Furry Friday: Those senior citizens

NICK BARNETT
Last updated 12:38 29/11/2013

Kittens and puppies can liquefy your heart. I know this - that's why I arranged for some liquefaction last week. But old pets, grizzled and wise-eyed, can charm you just as much, and move you in way that the babies don't.

These are pets that have seen a lot and smelled a lot, eaten things they shouldn't, leapt when they should have looked, and learnt some tricks. Sometimes they never lose their inner kitten or puppy; sometimes life teaches them that the simple pleasures are all that count: a bowl of food, a cushion in the sun, a cuddle with that person they've known all their life.

Please stand and offer your seats to the seniors.

Our cover-dog is Nitro, trusting and trustworthy.

Nitro

Shilo at 17, benign and beautiful.

Shiloh

Jake is an early-golden-age 7 years old, but greying handsomely.

Jake

The sweet face of Coruba, aged 15-and-a-half. His owner gives a testimonial: "He has had radioactive treatment at 10, currently on steroids and B12 injections every month due to weight loss, but he is the most cuddliest, softest, loving, purriest catfriend/fur-angel, my sleeping-in partner on weekends, my comfort when I feel sad or sick and the first one to greet me when I get home from work. I love him with all my heart."

Coruba

The late Sooty lived to a ripe 12.

Sooty

Lucy is 9 years old and has only three legs after being hit by a car - but she still manages to move fast, especially if a ball is involved.

Lucy

Alice lived a good 16 years before leaving the world a few months ago. She's not forgotten.

Alice

The late Ebony, at 8, with whiskers of distinction. She started going grey at the age of 3 but was never vain about it.

Ebony

Tom is 15 next birthday, going strong.

Tom

Katie is a senior girl at 11, but still acts, runs and smiles like a puppy.

Katie

Here's Smij at 18, no longer with us. Her owner Cheryl says Smij was "in your face (literally) smooching every chance she got".

Smij

Molly loves to walk. Then she loves to take a breather.

Molly

I'm told Tara the Pomeranian is as angelic of nature as she is of face. And, at nearly 13, she could still win a beauty contest.

Tara 12

An elegant, dignified old gentleman: Jack the 15-year-old Foxy.

Jack

Eleven-year-old Chris has never lost the traveller's bug. Here he is in his favourite place - the car.

Chris

Barney, 13, is king of the kitchen floor.

Barney

Pepa made his mark on the world during his 12 years. And the world made a mark on him, or at least on his whiskers.

Pepa

A barbecue cover in the sun - bliss for Kellan. RIP Kellan.

kELLAN

Brenny was the matriarch of a multi-species household. She loved water, especially puddles, and in her final weeks often curled up and slept in the rain. RIP Brenny.

Brenny

Pita, nearly 11, greets the sun and any visitor who who might turn up at the door.

Pita

A little rusty but runs well: Pixi, who was inherited at 6 years old by owner Cheryl. "Over time she became rather deaf (and developed a rather loud meow to compensate) and she gradually became slower ... but always had it in her to catch the odd mouse in between snoozing in the sunniest spots around the house."

Pixi

Ten-year-old Mouse rules over two cats, a puppy, and five humans.

 

Mouse

Sevanna's coming up to the big One-O.

Sevanna

Sally at sweet 16. RIP Sally.

Sally

Nemo's making an adjustment. He's 10 years old, and suddenly shares the house with a new baby.

Nemo

Look at Jack's agility certificate. Look at it! How's that for a senior citizen of 10?

Jack

Lace is 12, a retired dairy farm dog who enjoys chasing rabbits and sleeping on the couch.

Lace

Vinnie's on holiday.

Vinnie

Chilling in the sun: 8-year-old Crunchie.

Crunchie

This is Merlot, of whom her owner Linda is proud. Twelve-year-old Merlot is "the highest qualified Griffon in NZ in agility, obedience, and Rally-o. Happily retired. Pictured here with the Griffon Club Best Black in show trophy, gained in November. Love my boy."

Merlot

Let owner Lauren tell Jake's story: "This is my beautiful friend Jake. He would accompany me and my horse on the beach for lovely runs. Jake always knew when I got out the saddle he was in for some fun. As he and my horse aged, rides out weren't as long, but we would still go. This photo shows Jake at the beach without his equine friend, who at the age of 32 just couldn't take the work anymore. If only I knew that this would be the last time Jake and I would go to the beach. He died a few weeks after this photo was taken, my great friend for 13 years. Then later in the year I lost my old horse. I have comfort knowing that they are together as they liked to be."

Jake

Jodie was adopted from the Te Awamutu SPCA so has one of those rough SPCA age estimates - 13 or 14.

Jodie

Riely made it to a regal 15. RIP Riely.

Riely

She's nearly 15, but Mouse is still active and catching rabbits.

Mouse

The couch was forbidden, but 11-year-old Phoebe got round that rule by hiding in plain site. RIP Phoebe.

Phoebe

Ace is 15 and Skyla is 3. Ace likes the young one's company, really.

Ace & Skyla

Finally, a smile from Lass, who these days prefers sitting on the truck watching others round up cattle. Oh and belly rubs. One thing about age, it focuses you on what really matters.

Lass

Thanks to all for posting your photos. Please email me your own photos, or go to the Four Legs Good Facebook page and use the Upload Photo button. While you're there, browse through the 3000 photos that readers have posted by clicking the Photos link.

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