Penny– DIGNITY Project 

Started in April 2014, the DIGNITY project has photographed senior dogs across Nova Scotia to help raise awareness of the challenges facing elderly K9s, their (often) senior owners and to aid ElderDog Canada. 

With photography for the project winding-down, there are but two shoots remaining – the first of which is scheduled in mid-January in Halifax.  Upon completion, DIGNITY will have photographed roughly 60 elderly dogs – far too many of whom are no longer with us.

Our noble model today is Penny, the 19th image release from the project and the first shot at the Ivany Pace senior’s facility in Bedford.

Penny’s genetics, exact age (thought to be roughly 13) and origins are a bit of a mystery as she was rescued by the SPCA in New Brunswick in 2003 when approximately a year old.  

Adopted shortly thereafter, she had a loving life with the same family in N.B. and later Ontario. However, three years ago unforeseen circumstances required finding her a new home late in life.  

At that juncture, her adopting mom Kathy, now of ElderDog Halifax, mounted a road trip to bring Penny to Nova Scotia to live out her years. 

As with many of our models, Penny is now pretty well deaf and won’t be passing any eye tests in the near future. That being said, she’s adapted with aplomb – and, like ALL our models, her nose (as evidenced by her reaction to treats) is still in prime condition.

Like many elderly K9s, Penny has also developed some cognitive issues (think human dementia) requiring that a light be left on for her when she sleeps to avoid waking frightened in the early hours, etc. 

All trials of aging aside, Penny still walks 3-4 km a day and (rumor has it), will breakout some very puppy-like ‘happy dance’ moves under just the right circumstances.

During our shoot at Ivany Place, residents were invited to come by to watch and interact with the models – a task Penny took to with relish (between naps). 

We’d like to thank all those businesses and individuals who’ve supported the project with donated shooting locations over its course. Your thoughtfulness & consideration will not be forgotten. 


Ardra and Rob