Happy 10th birthday, Zeke Dog!

Today, October 20, is Zeke’s 10th birthday. I can’t believe he’s been here for a whole decade. Here’s a timeline of his accomplished life.

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October 20, 2006: Zeke (or “Cricket” as they called him then) is born in Auburn, California at Golden Acres Ranch, where they breed Australian Shepherds for people who want pets.

San Mateo living

January 2007: David drives up to Auburn from San Mateo, CA to pick out his new pup! Zeke may have been the runt, but even then Zeke made up for it in personality. His vet takes a picture of all their new patients, and then sends that picture as a postcard reminder for check-ups.

The weekend before he had actually visited Leah when she was visiting family in California. We had no idea we would all be a family.

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Zeke lived a pretty awesome life in San Mateo with a variety of uncles in the house David shared with his friends. As all little ones do, Zeke still had school. He flew through elementary school.

June 16, 2007: Zeke graduates from Canine Middle School.

August 11, 2007: Zeke graduates from Canine High School.

December 15, 2007: Zeke pursues further education, completing Obedience for Dog Sports, which means he has the fundamentals to do things like catch frisbees in competitions. However, Zeke chose a quiet family life instead of the stardom of the frisbee dog.

As great as everything was living the bachelor life, David and Zeke longed for companionship. David started dating Leah later that year in 2007. In 2009, Ryan the Human and Zooey the Dog moved into the house, and Zeke began a complicated and tumultuous relationship with her.

The Belmont years

August 2010: When Leah and David got married, Zeke found himself living a quieter life in Belmont, CA. Here he oversaw the neighborhood park’s safety — both at the actual park and from the porch that overlooked it. He also aided Leah in her application and start of her MFA at California College of the Arts, occasionally sneaking in for studio visits.

Leaving his heart in San Francisco

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Some fancy moves on Valentine’s Day 2014

September 2013: We moved into the city of San Francisco about 35 minutes north, midway through Leah’s MFA. We had a concrete backyard that Zeke loved to play in because the ball bounced so well, and we were a 5 minute walk from the beach.

November 10, 2013: 15 minutes of fame hit hard for Zeke. A photographer finally recognizes Zeke’s handsome and intent demeanor. He is featured in “Dogs Pooping Dramatically” in The Bold Italic, San Francisco’s hip e-magazine.

Photo: Brock Daves, The Bold Italic

December 2014: Zeke becomes a traveler. He had done multiple car trips and one airplane ride as a puppy, but he flies to the east coast for Christmas this year. It’s the first time he’s gotten to visit Virginia.

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In Leah’s field

London calling

April 2016: We leave San Francisco for London. Somehow we’ve managed all the paperwork to transport Zeke across international lines, and he’s a trooper. As chronicled here, we drive from SF to NYC, then to Virginia. We fly from DC to London. And we’re all okay and safe.

And these days, Zeke helps Leah look for a job while she works on a whole new body of work in her studio. He feels proud to have been to everywhere in California, as well as Portland, OR, Spokane, ID, and for family visits to New York City, Connecticut, Washington, D.C., and Virginia. However, his favorite trips are to the park near our house with his soccer ball and running on the Dollis Valley Greenwalk next to our house. He does enjoy the occasional camping trip, but even Tube rides are a bit tiresome for him.

Currently his time is dedicated to investigating the deviant acts of the neighborhood fox. He also cares for all the household’s empty paper towel rolls. He hopes to explore the endless supply of London parks and to continue to sample the fine cuisine of Europe.

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Playtime at Holland Park, where David played with his dogs as a little boy

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