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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Allen


I have come to realize that life is not perfection. You can get more out of life by accepting imperfection, using the parts of your mind and body that still work, letting go of the past, making new friends, and being open to the idea that the best is yet to come.

These are some of the most important lessons I have learned from the dogs of Monkey’s House over the years. 

Their willingness to accept and be open to the possibilities that today is going to be a great day… even if they can’t see, they walk slowly, or they can no longer walk at all.  Focusing on the possibility of having a great day is a powerful, magical mindset. It does not take away cancer, arthritis, or dementia. However, that positive mindset leaves the window open for possibilities.

As I walk beside these dogs, both literally and figuratively, I notice they focus on things they find interesting. Be it de-stuffing and de-squeaking toys, enjoying the best ear and belly rub, or becoming fully immersed in an unfamiliar scent, all these things get their full attention, concentration, and mostly their delight.

These dogs do not seem to have regrets or dwell on unfulfilled dreams. They start their day with a belly filled with nutritious food and a leash connected to a human they may have only known for a short time. Off they go on a walk filled with the promise of possibilities.

They quickly catch the scent of chickens and get excited. Many wag their tails, others focus on the scent, and then there is the stop, drop, and roll in chicken droppings. Whatever their approach, it’s easy to witness their delight.

This event happens just a few feet out of the door of the house, they have not even walked far enough to discover the exotic scents of deer, raccoon, squirrels, or rabbits. Some dogs fatigue quickly and start to lag. They do not dwell on how unfair it is that they cannot walk far, but rather are thrilled that their new human picks them up and carries them on the rest of the adventure outside.

These simple and seemingly mundane activities continue throughout the day. By nightfall, the pups are happily content and tired. We never know how many tomorrows there will be, but these everyday simple moments of joy strung together make for an awesome last day, week, month, or year for the pups just because they are open to possibilities.

It is really that simple, assuming we can shed our human regrets, disappointments, and failures. Letting the simple things be grand is key.  Do not let any of these opportunities pass you by. 

The arthritis in my hands, wrists, and shoulders makes curling irons impossible but this old girl can still get hot rollers in, I’m trying to make the most of what works, be open to possibilities, and know that if I can continue with this mindset, I can string a bunch of simple moments of joy into an awesome rest of my life. 

Go for walks, drink a lot of fresh water, and most importantly… approach life like a wise senior dog.

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Mar 01

You, Jeff, and all the aunts and uncles are amazing


Feb 27

It's almost too simple yet as easily as our pets love the potential each day, or even moments, we humans don't seem to realize it for ourselves. I learn so much about life and loving every day from your pups, and how you share those learnings with us with humor as well as simplicity. Thanks as always for helping to open our eyes a bit more. Love to all! ❤️🐾


Feb 27

A beautiful post of a perfect outlook on life! The dogs that join you, are so fortunate for the opportunities they receive! Thank you for sharing with us and putting into words a hospice dog’s look on life!


Feb 26

You just get it. This really hit home. You opened my eyes to so much. I am so blessed to have found you and Monkey’s House!


Feb 26

Thank you for these words of wisdom. It is so important to live life to the fullest just like our dogs do.

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