This was posted on an Airedale list I'm on - thought I'd share it here:
Grow Old With Dogs
When I am old... I will wear soft grey sweatshirts,
and a bandana over my silver hair,
and I will spend my social security cheques on wine and my dogs.
I will sit in my house on my well-worn chair
and listen to my dogs' breathing.
I will sneak out in the middle of a warm summer night
and take my dogs for a run, if my old bones will allow...
When people come to call, I will smile
and nod as I show them my dogs,
and talk of them and about them......
the ones so beloved of the past
and the ones so beloved of today.
I will still work hard cleaning after them,
mopping and feeding them and
whispering their names in a soft loving way.
I will wear the gleaming sweat on my throat,
like a jewel, and I will be an embarrassment to all,
especially my family...
who have not yet found the peace in being free
to have dogs as your best friends.
These friends who always wait, at any hour, for your footfall,
and eagerly jump to their feet out of a sound sleep,
to greet you as if you are a god,
With warm eyes full of adoring love and hope
that you will always stay.
I'll hug their big strong necks,
I'll kiss their dear sweet heads,
and whisper in their very special company.
I look in the mirror... and see I am getting old.
this is the kind of person I am, and have always been.
Loving dogs is easy, they are part of me.
Please accept me for who I am.
My dogs appreciate my presence in their lives,
they love my presence in their lives.
When I am old this will be important to me.
You will understand when you are old....
if you have dogs to love too.
"It came to me that every time I lose a dog they take a piece of my heart with them.
And every new dog who comes into my life, gifts me with a piece of their heart.
If I live long enough, all the components of my heart will be dog,
and I will become as generous and loving as they are."