I've owned 4 Yellow Labs in my life and I've never had one of them make it 14 years of age.  I currently own two living Labs and the other two both passed away at 13 years old.  I also had a Yellow Lab growing up, and it also died at 13.  See a pattern here?

Now don't get me wrong, I realize that's a long life for a big dog.  The average life span for a Labrador Retriever according to the Labradorsite is 10-12 years.  I've also known plenty of people who have lost Labs at a much younger age than 13 or even 10.   So, I know to some degree, I've been fortunate to get 13 years out of my beloved pets.

My Labs have always been hunting dogs, and swimming in icy waters and hunting in brutal conditions can't be good for their life expectancy.  I don't remember who said it but, "It truly is a sad part of life, that we outlive our faithful four legged friends."  I often joke on the radio, about being married and having a teenager...I'm so glad I have dogs, so somebody is happy to see me when I get home.  lol

So here I am with another 13 year old Lab.  Her name is "Bridget" and she was born on 10-17-06.  That puts her at just under 4 months until she hits that magic 14 mark.  She's the sweetest dog you'll ever meet and she's had a unfortunate life.  She went blind at the age of 5 or 6 and I mean completely blind.  I was playing catch with her and I noticed she didn't seem to see the tennis ball in the yard anymore.  Then, she started running into the shed, and like a light switch she was blind.  Bridget also loved to bird hunt with me, and that has been very hard for her to just give up.  She seems so sad when I come home from a pheasant trip with my other Lab Callie.

This morning I read an article on KX News about a Golden Retriever celebrating her 20th birthday, and how it's now the oldest known living Golden Retriever.  Well, this got me thinking about my girl.  It got me thinking about last Thanksgiving, where I brought her along on one last pheasant hunting trip.  I let her run around in the cattails for a little bit and even though she didn't flush a bird, you could see that instinct kick in when she put her nose to ground.  She was so happy.  Her favorite thing in the world is to sit next to me by the couch and put her face on my leg.  A heart of gold, I truly don't deserve her.  I'm so looking forward to her 14th birthday and I intend to spoil her rotten, and yes take her pheasant hunting again.  I so hope I get to do this.


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