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Wednesday, Jul 23 2014 11:02 AM

Cockapoo turns 20 years old...that's 115 to me and you!

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Missy the Cockapoo is now 115 years old in people years.

Gale and Ray Smith proudly hold their three dogs: Tinker, at left, Lolly, at right, at Missy, center, a cockapoo who turned 20 years old on July 16.

Missy, an amazing four-legged member of the Ray and Gale Smith family, celebrated her 20th birthday on July 16. That makes her 115 in human years, according to the Dog/Human Age Converter found on maxiebeagle.com.


Born in 1994 just a few doors down from where she spent her whole life, Missy the Cockapoo has been with the Smiths since she was only one day old.


"Missy is one tough little dog who is more than just a family member," said Gale Smith, adding, “she is a great comfort.”


According to Wikipedia, Cockapoos are considered designer dogs, perhaps the earliest of popular cross-bred dogs, in this case a mix of Cocker Spaniel and Poodle.


The American Cockapoo Club states that Cockapoos tend to be quite long-lived, as with a lot of smaller dogs, and it is not unusual for this breed to live to 15 years of age or more.


However, the UC Davis "Book of Dogs," state that small-breed dogs, such as Cockapoos, become geriatric at about 11 years of age, versus large breed dogs, such as Great Danes, who are considered geriatric at seven years of age.


Experts say that the old wisdom in calculating a dog's age is multiplying every human year by seven dog years is a myth, and not quite correct.


AskABreeder.com states that dogs age very quickly their first year, then slow dramatically the next couple of years from the original growth rate. Then, depending on the size of the breed, a different calculation is needed for determine dog age in people years.


However, when attempting to use the AskABreeder.com's Dog Years Calculator for small breeds, such as Missy's, don't bother if your dog is over 16 years of age in human years, because that is as far as the calculator goes.


Wikipedia.org maintains a list of the oldest dogs verified in the world. Ranking first was Max, a United States terrier, who lived 29 years, 282 days. Of the 17 verified listed dogs, those ranking 12th through 17th lived to 20 years of age, with the 12th, a toy poodle named Seamus from the United States, who lived 20 years, 298 days, and the 17th, a Dachshund named Scolly from Mexico, who lived 20 years, 33 days.

What does this all mean?


At 20 years of age, Missy has outlived most small, medium or large dogs of any breed.


Should her lifespan continue past the next few weeks, she would be a very good candidate to be added to Wikipedia's list as one of the oldest living dogs.


The Smiths gave Missy a good home and in return they say she has given them 20 years of loyalty and friendship.


Missy also has two sisters: Lolly, who was born Nov. 29, 2002, in Portland, Ore., and Tinker, who was born on March 20, 2003, in Casper, Wyo.


The Smiths had met Lolly in 2004 while traveling in their motorhome. Then, in 2009, Lolly was given up by her previous owners, so the Smiths took her in and gave her a new home with a big sister. Later, in 2013, Tinker came to live with the Smiths after her owner gave her up, as well.


Local residents since 1987, Ray and Gale say that Missy gets around still even at her late age, but she sometimes bumps into chairs as she has lost her eyesight.

According to the Smiths, the love that they hold for all their dogs, as well as each other, is priceless.

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