At 19 years old, a beautiful Cattle Dog mix named Ace was surrendered to the Humane Society of Sonoma County, in Santa Rosa, California.
And, as if being surrendered at such an old age was not enough for this senior dog, a disastrous wildfire hit Sonoma Country.
Ace, along with the rest of the dogs at the shelter without adopters, had to be transferred to the Sacramento SPCA to make room for incoming evacuees from the wildfire.
That is how this old boy ended up 150 miles away, in Sacramento, looking for his second chance.
The news of a 19-year-old dog at the SPCA spread like crazy.
“The rescue posted him and I didn’t know what kind of dog he was, I just knew that he was a 19-year-old dog. I immediately called and asked to foster him,” Bonnie, Ace’s foster mom, told The Dodo.
Although on paper, Ace was 19 years old, he acted and pranced like a much younger dog.
“When I asked to foster him, my only intent was to get him out of the shelter. Because he’s nineteen. He’s been through enough, and he needs to get into a home,” she said.
When Ace first arrived at his foster home, he was very aloof, independent, and didn’t care for any kind of attention.
After three weeks, he started to get much more comfortable, and even interact and play with Bonnie’s other dogs.
“Ace thinks he’s two. It’s like a teenager or a much younger dog,” Bonnie said.
One thing Ace liked more than anything, though, was his toys… all kinds of toys, actually.
And, although he still liked to prance around like a puppy, Ace was an older dog after all, so he ended up needing quite a bit of dental work. His eyesight also wasn’t very good.
Ace had twelve dental extractions, so he ended up staying with his foster mom for several months until he completely healed.
During that time, he started to get more affectionate and happier. “When he first came up and put his head on my lap and started nuzzling me, it tugged at my heart. That is when I decided that I was going to adopt him,” Bonnie said.
They made it official just days before Christmas.
The only thing his new mom wanted for him was to be happy.
Sadly, it just wasn’t meant to be…
Lucky Ones Pack
Ace was always a bit of an odd and quirky dog, and with Bonnie not having any prior Cattle Dog experience, things didn’t go as smoothly as expected.
Ace was distant and only wanted to play with his toys – the complete opposite of a regular house dog that interacts with his family.
“After he bit her, she decided to surrender him to us. We are glad we kept in touch with her, as Cattle Dogs are not for everyone!” Lucky Ones Ranch, an animal sanctuary in Vacaville, CA, wrote in their Facebook post.
At Lucky Ones Ranch sanctuary, they let Ace just be himself.
“He preferred toys over people interaction. He did not want to be petted and loved on. And that was ok with us. At his age of 19 years old, we just wanted him to be happy and do what he was most comfortable in doing,” they said.
During his time at the ranch, Ace kept busy playing with his toys, moving about, and sleeping.
After everything he has been through, he is finally happy doing things he likes and simply being a Cattle Dog.
He is still pretty much obsessed with toys, and they aren’t going to try to change that.
“We think he must have been left alone for long periods of time, and he has become obsessed with toys to occupy his time,” Lucky Ones Ranch said.
For one year and four months, Ace lived a truly happy life.
The twenty-year-old Ace passed away peacefully at the ranch, surrounded by his loved ones, and of course, his toys that he loved more than anything.