12682 Kagel Canyon Road, Sylmar, CA 91342, US

(818) 636-1522

Golden Years Dog Sanctuary

golden years dog sanctuary: a nonprofit dedicated to dog and cat rescue.

Current Residents at Golden Years Dog Sanctuary



Cotton is one of our longest residents.  She came to our farm in 2006 at less than one year old.  She belonged to a  neighbor, but she was in love with Chester and Cosmo.  Our neighbor gave her to us and she has been one of our favorite dogs ever since.  She used to love to play with tennis balls and go to horse shows.  Now, like the loyal sheepdog mix she is, she guards the horses every day.  At night she retires to  her bed.  She has seen many dogs come and go on our farm. It will be a sad day when she leaves us.


Chrystal is the beige and white dog; her mom is cinnamon lying next to her.

Just before Easter in 2016 we saw a post showing a bonded pair of  senior dogs at the Downey Animal Care Center.  Crystal and Cinnamon looked quite pathetic.  How could we say no?    We believe Cinnamon was Crystal's mom.  Sadly we lost Cinnamon in 2018.   Crystal, who we believe is a 2006 baby, is doing well.  She appears to be boxer and staffordshire terrier, but has the bark of a beagle.   When we adopted her and Cinnamon they had no idea what grass was.  They were afraid to go indoors and clearly had never experienced human love.  To this day we have never seen Crystal wag her tail but at least she no longer keeps it tucked under herself!



Rescued from the Los Angeles City North Central Shelter in October 2017, her name was "Effie." She is twelve years old going on two!  She loves running around the entire farm! This 2007 model has no idea how old she is, and we don't plan on telling her!



"Patrina" was her name at the Downey Animal Care Center. We rescued her just before Thanksgiving in 2017.  Another 2006 model with no idea she is a senior.  She has quite the personality!  She doesn't like others getting love when we are loving her, but barges in on other dog's love moments without a second thought.



"Isabel" was our  foster failure!  We fostered her for the Los Angeles City North Central Shelter in November of 2017.  We tried to find her a forever home but she and all the clients at Goldspirit Farm decided that we are her forever home!  This dog is amazing.   She breaks every stereotype about staffordshire terriers and pitbulls.  She is the biggest love and does not have an aggressive bone in her body!



Susan went to West Valley Animal Shelter to bring them newspapers.  As if she could leave without a dog!  She adopted "Mikie" a 12 year old little staffie that would not walk back to his kennel.  He really wanted out.  Cashew is the sweetest little dog. He gets along great with everyone and just loves being free to roam where he wants



They called her "Lucky" at the Los Angeles County Animal Care Center in Lancaster.  At about ten years of age, with  cranial muscular atrophy, no one was going to adopt this owner surrender dog.  So we did in May of 2018!  She is the biggest love.  Although deaf and nearly blind, she is amazing.  Her depth perception is off, but can she is able to  navigate around the farm and backyard just fine!



Susan was asked to come adopt "pretty mamma" from the Downey Animal Care Center in September of 2018.   She was ten years old and red listed to be PTS.  She was so shy and scared, she would not lift her head to greet us or to be petted.  Of course we would take her!  She is now living up to her name.  She loves to carry  toys around in her mouth.  She loves to run as fast  she can across the cross country field and onto her bed.  She loves to stand guard and protect us. She is one of the most grateful dogs we have!



Word gets out when a rescue group is at the shelter.  A kennel attendant pulled Susan aside when she was looking at courage and asked if she could look at another dog.  She was old, sick, and was not even available to the public. Her life would be doomed.  Except that we look for those old, sick, ugly dogs.  So crusty has a  forever home with us!  She is at least twelve, if not older. She has an auto-immune problem and skin irritations that we have treated with multiple medications to no avail. She also has a hernia that has probably been there for many years. She has been to three vets; all agree to leave her as is; surgery would probably be worse for her at her age and condition.  She is none for the worse. She is happy and loves life!  



Sometimes you just have to go to the shelter and adopt a dog!  Such was a day for Cooper, a 2008 Golden Retriever. His name was Jack and he had been at the Los Angeles City West Valley Animal Shelter for a while. We were a little unsure of getting a male dog as Clive is a dominant dog, but Jack was good  in the play group with another male.  We love big dogs, so home he came!  Cooper has a little separation anxiety, but is otherwise happy to hang out with his pack.



Countess, known as Apache at the Baldwin Animal Care Center, is a fifteen year old black lab/pit bull mix.  The day Susan went to adopt her, she developed kennel cough.  She looked quite sad and pathetic in her kennel, so of course, we adopted her.  Her cough turned into pneumonia. We were not sure she would make it in the beginning.  It was a long eight days, but she pulled through!  She knew she had so much to live for!  She is now so happy and grateful to have a gang and a horse farm to hang out in.



Cow was owner surrendered at the  Castaic Animal care center for being old, blind, deaf, unable to walk and incontinent.  She is old, at thirteen, but has none of those conditions.  She does, however, have a huge tumor on her back leg that looks like an udder from behind; hence the name.  She is so happy to be free and able to walk. Yes!  She does walk all the way to the top of the property and back. She reminds us of Chance, who also did not know she was not suppose to be able to walk!  Thanks to donations, we are able to have the surgery to remove her tumor.



"Penelope,"  a 2006 Staffordshire Terrier, was not doing well at the West Valley Animal Shelter.   She was depressed, shutting down and had trouble moving and getting up.  Without our intervention, this adorable dog would not be with us now.  With a little arthritis medicine, love, and room to move, her arthritis doesn't hold her back. She loves to walk to the barn and back. Her arthritic knees make her very bowed legged, but it doesn't keep her from running around! 



It is difficult to believe this gorgeous, healthy, friendly, dog was going to pts because she was twelve years old and skinny.  She didn't fit our criteria at all: she was adoptable and healthy!  yet, We could not leave the palmdale shelter hoping someone would save her from death; so we adopted her! By the end of day one, She was already glued to Susan's side. She is loyal and smart. She learned quickly to stay out of the arenas and away from the horses.  Another perfect fit for Golden Years Dog Sanctuary!



Susan was called about getting a dog, named "oso" from north central.  She was a little worried, as male dogs can sometimes be aggressive.  She was assured, not the case.  So on a Friday afternoon, Susan drove down to the shelter to adopt him only to find out, another shelter pulled him.  Only, they didn't really.  The next day at 4:50 pm, Susan was asked to adopt this dog sight unseen or he would be pts. Who could say no to that? With the help from Angels for Animals; we saved Oso! And,didn't we luck out!  Curry is the most gentle, loving, sweet dog...and a chow on top of that!  So much for stereotypes!



"Barney" was at the Harbor Shelter for months. When he arrived at the shelter in April of 2019, he was dragging his hind legs.  X-rays showed he had abnormalities in his pelvis and hip sockets, yet he remained in great spirits. We adopted him on July 26, 2019.  He has no idea his x-rays show abnormalities; he runs around the farm with his tail wagging. He is quite a talkative soul and likes to bark/howl when he is happy.



We saved Candy in 2013 after another dog we had for only a few months tragically died suddenly.  Clive was heartbroken and needed a new chew toy.  Candy, a 2008 mix of unknown breeds who we adopted from the Palmdale Animal Care Center, was the answer.  She is our alpha and keeps everyone in line.  At 11 years of age, she is a senior now!  Ssh. Don't tell her that; her nickname is "fastest dog."



This dog was literally dumped from a moving pick-up truck at the cemetery up the street from our farm.    At two  years of age and un-neutered in 2012,  he was quite a handful.  He has mellowed with age, but still thinks he is the alpha.  He is quite the love and a favorite of many of the clients at Goldspirit Farm.

Those that left our home but not our hearts in 2018 and 2019



We never expected to lose Copper so soon.  One minute she was fine; the next she was shaking and her stomach was bloated.  She was in pain and it up to us to ensure she did not suffer.  We will miss this sweet, happy dog! she was not a planned rescue, but we were always so glad we did!  Before we became an adoption partner with the County of Los Angeles, we were prohibited from adopting "rescue only" dogs.  Susan went to the  Downey Animal Care Center to adopt a dog that had to be an only dog but  we did not have the pull rights to take her.   We could only save one dog that day. After meeting several dogs, we chose Copper. She is a funny looking 2008 golden retriever mix.  Paul calls her "Happy" because she always is!  Of course, she is always hungry too!  That's dogs! 



After thirteen years at Goldspirit Farm, Cosmo was finally ready to say goodbye.  On Thursday February 7, Cosmo he didn't want to eat or get up.  We set an appointment with the vet, and gave him a last great day. He had cat food ( what dog doesn't love cat food), turkey and even dog food. He walked to the barn for the last time and put himself to bed for his final good-bye.  Cosmos came into our life one day in 2006. he was waiting at the gate as if to say, "May I come in?" At fifteen, Cosmo was the longest four-legged resident at Goldspirit farm.  



His name was "Muerto" on the owner surrender papers.  Volunteers changed his name to "Vivo."  When we rescued this 2009 Pit Bull from the Los Angeles County Lancaster Animal Care Center, he could not walk on his hind legs; he dragged them behind.  We thought we were going to have to humanely euthanize him.  Lo and behold what a little steroid can do! Not only can he walk, but he can climb the steps into the dogominum and even run. at his pace! For two months Champ was loved, was able to be free and wander the grounds, and have lots of 4-legged friends. Unfortunately, his time with us was too short; he died in his sleep only two months after we rescued him.  



When we lose one dog, we can't wait to save another. Clouseau was adopted from the North Central Los Angeles Shelter to honor Champ's passing.  Clouseau was a ten year old gray staffordshire terrier just like champ.  He had four good legs to walk on, but quite a lot of arthritis.  He fit in great with all the ladies and gents.  He was a sweet soul and we were happy to welcome him into our pack. Clouseau had a grade 4 heart murmur, but it was a sudden bout with cancer in his leg that caused his passing.  These darn dogs come into our lives, and we hope to have so much time with them.  We were glad to give him his last months with joy and love.



This sweet dog was so abused when we adopted her, she was afraid to be petted. She came to us a ten year old stray.  She was deaf and partially blind. Shortly after we adopted her she was diagnosed with tumors. We didn't think we would have much time with her, but we figured she wanted to live ten years of a good life to make up for her bad life.  She lived for over three years with us.  One day she heard my voice in the barn, walked from her bed and literally laid down at my feet.  She died shortly after that moment. She died with me by her side, cradling her and giving her the love she deserved.



If ever there was a dog that needed saving!  Cornelius was owner surrendered at the Los Angeles City East Valley Shelter with a request to put him down!  He was 15, semi- crippled, and mostly blind with all sorts of lumps.  He looked like a dog that could be in the movie Nightmare Before Christmas!  He had lots of spunk!  He wanted to get with all the girls.  He was Crackerjack's best friend.  One night, he just seemed a little off, and the next day he went to sun himself and simply fell asleep.  We gave him five wonderful months.



 "Pup" was an hour away from being PTS at the Los Angeles County Palmdale Animal Care Center when we adopted her.  They said she could not get up or walk; you should see the video of her springing out of the shelter. This 2003, 16 year young dog loved to walk the entire 660 meter gallop track every day!  Nothing slowed her down! It is so great to see a dog that was called crippled, walking for hours. She was living it up! Poor chance woke up one morning not feeling well.  A trip to the vet's office revealed a tumor in her spleen.  We have dealt with that before; we thought she would be ok for a bit.  Unfortunately, she was quite uncomfortable that evening.  We stayed with her all night until she passed peacefully in her sleep.



 Susan went to the Lancaster Animal Care Center to adopt a fifteen year old dog who was rescued by another non-profit.  Not wanting to leave empty handed, she found Crooked.  Crooked was owner surrendered that day; she had not even been evaluated by a veterinarian yet.  She could barely walk or stand on her own.  We thought for sure we were adopting a hospice  dog. It turns out, however, that old dog vestibular syndrome was quite treatable, and fairly inexpensive.  She sometimes walked in circles and held her head at a tilt.  Hence the name. She blessed us with her presence for 13 months. We lost her to cancer August 26, 2019.   


What's in a name?

You may have noticed that every dog has a name beginning with the letter "C."  Susan adopted her first dog the day she closed escrow at Goldspirit Farm.  She named her Cody.  She then saved Chrissy from a life on a chain.  Cujo was a 145 pound German Shepherd that Susan found blocking the driveway on a nearby farm.  A client convinced Susan to adopt Cali because she had a "C" name and would fit in with the group. Then one morning two puppies were dumped in a box outside the gate.  Susan's brother took one puppy who lived to be fifteen.   The other puppy was named Oscar.  After only two weeks at the farm, this eight week old Old English Sheepdog mix went for a walk over the hill and never came back.  It was decided that all dogs living at Goldspirit Farm needed a "C" name.  A few dogs have few come through our gates and were adopted out before were given a "C"name.  Since 1999 the following dogs with a "C" name have had a short or long stay at Goldspirit Farm:

Cody,   Chrissy,    Cali,    Cujo,   C.D,    Charlie,   Cookie ,   Chopper,   Colonel,   Cupcake,   Connie,    Curly, Clondike,   Citty,   Chocolate,   Caluha,   Camper,    Carmel,    Carli,    Cutie Pie,    Corky,    Charlotte,   C.C, Cassie,    Coffee,   Charity,    Cornelius,  Charles,   CoCo,   Chicken Little,   Charcoal,   Cozy,   Catie,   Cotton, Cosmo,   Chester,   Cinnamon,   Crystal,   Cappaccino,   Cornbread,   Crackerjack,   Clover,    Crooked, Copper,   Courage,   Crusty,   Cooper,   Cruiser,   Chance,   Champ