Hespeler, 7 January, 2018 © Scott McAndless
John 16:20-22, Philippians 4:4-9, Psalm 40:1-9, 15-17
id you know the oldest dog whose age was ever reliably recorded was an Australian Cattle Dog named “Bluey.” Bluey lived to the almost unthinkable age, for a dog of 29 years and five months. But here is the really surprising part. You might think that the reason why Bluey lived so long was because she was pampered and well cared-for, that she got nothing but the best of foods and medical treatment. But that is not true. She was, by all accounts a well-loved and fairly treated dog, but she hardly had an easy life. She spent 20 straight years of her long life working at an extremely difficult and physically demanding job, herding cattle.
Bluey was an exceptional animal, of course, but in some ways, it is not that surprising that a hard-working dog should be the longest living. I believe that if you made an extensive search through the statistics concerning dogs, you would find that it was consistently the hardest working dogs who have the longest lifespans and, what’s more, that such dogs were generally happier and better adjusted than the average. This includes several canine professions, at least when those professions keep them in regular contact with other animals or human beings (because dogs are extremely social animals). Obviously, this would exclude dogs that perform very dangerous jobs such as those who work in war zones.
Why should this be? Well, one thing that we should always remember is that dogs are not natural animals. They are the descendants of wolves but, in every case,