Whenever I go for walks with my old mutt, Roxy, I usually take the opportunity to listen to a podcast. Recently, though, it was her 15th birthday, so as we set out on an extra-long birthday stroll, I took the opportunity to quietly reflect on the past decade and a half.

We both grew up on a farm together and she’s been with me through many major life events. It got me wondering, what has the world looked like through her mismatched blue-and-brown eyes? What has she learned about life in the past fifteen years, and what advice would she have for us humans?

If Roxy could talk, I think this is what she’d say:

1. Start each morning with a stretch and a big wet kiss.

2. Just like tails, some things are meant to be chased, but not caught.

3. Always greet your family at the door and tell them how much you missed them. You never know when they might not come back.

4. Every car ride or errand can be an adventure with the right attitude.

5. If you want something, don’t be afraid to ask for it.

6. Get outside every day. The only walks you’ll regret are the ones you don’t take.

7. Lead with all your senses and you’ll see the world differently. There’s always more there than what meets the eye. 

8. If you love someone, let them know, unapologetically.

9. Run every chance that you get. One day, your bones won’t be able to move as fast as your mind thinks they can.

10. Live in the moment whenever possible; don’t worry about what tomorrow may hold.

11. The little humans that you watch over now will eventually watch over you, so cherish every adventure and game of dress-up with them. One day, it will be the last time they ever play pretend with you.

12. Food is a love language.

13. You don’t have to always choose forgiveness, but you’ll be a lot happier if you do.

14. Blood doesn’t make someone family, love does.

15. Give yourself a chance and you might be surprised what you’re capable of! Despite what they say, you’re never too old to learn new tricks.

Dr. I. Wonder is here to answer your questions regarding your furry family members. If you have a question, email it to us at danielle@NeighbourhoodPetClinic.com.  Our team at Neighbourhood Pet Clinic will tap into their collective experience to answer your various questions.