Photo by: Purwo Kuncoro

Jane Goodall’s 90-Dog Salute

Dr. Jane Goodall surrounded by dogs and their people at a 90-dog salute in honor of Dr. Goodall’s 90th birthday. Photo by Greg Smith.

by Sharal Camisa Smith

When Jane Goodall was asked how she wanted to spend her 90th birthday, the trailblazing primatologist said, “With dogs.” It says a lot when the woman synonymous with chimpanzees, exclaims that dogs are her favorite animal. Jane Goodall has made that assertion in multiple interviews, and recently, her love of dogs was celebrated.

To honor Jane’s birthday wishes, the Wildlife Conservation Network organized a 90-Dog Salute. The four-legged festivities were held on March 23 at Carmel Beach in California. My 13-year-old dog, Honey Bee, was one of 90 dogs selected to salute the legend. We joked that in dog years, Honey Bee is older than Jane.

Jane was happy and relaxed that day on the beach, running along the water’s edge, throwing sticks into the waves, and offering pats and scratches to the dogs. The humans were in awe of the icon’s presence, but the dogs were just happy to spend the day getting the attention of a nice lady.

Jane Goodall greets Sharal Camisa Smith and her dog Honey Bee at Jane Goodall’s 90th birthday celebration in Carmel, California.
Photo by Greg Smith.

When it was my dog’s turn to meet the Dame of the British Empire, I held my breath, hoping Honey Bee would be on her best behavior. As Jane gazed into my girl’s eyes, they just stared at each other, and then Jane gently kissed Honey Bee on the top of her head. A very nice lady and a very good girl, indeed.

Comments 2

2 responses to “Jane Goodall’s 90-Dog Salute”

  1. Elise Brown Ersoy, Leakey Foundation Trustee says:

    What an absolutely wonderful tribute to Dr. Goodall! A giant in her field and a continual inspiration to many. Happy Birthday!

  2. Ted Allen Frederick says:

    Dear Jane,

    Your work and courage have been an inspiration to me and, I am sure, to many others around the world. The knowledge you gained thru your studies
    has humbled many on our planet.
    We now share a world equally with our brothers whom we now love,
    understand and respect.

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