Furry Friends Find Retirement

Image source: Photographer Jolene Ogle

Many of us move to Noosa with plans for a relaxed retirement spent soaking up the sunshine; and Raphael is no different; except, as Jolene Ogle discovers, this retiree is a very cute pooch!

For the first 10 years of his life, Raphael (aka Raffa) spent his weekends at cool Melbourne cafes sipping puppachinos, walking the streets of the city’s trendy alleyways and working alongside his owner in a retail store. When his owners Fiona and husband Adrian decided to make a sea change and move to Castaways Beach, he happily came along for the ride.

They moved to the region searching for a life of relaxation and sunshine with plans to semi-retire, joining many former Melbourne and Sydney residents who call Noosa home. Raffa’s new home came with a pool and he now lives just a short walk from the beach, something he had never experienced before coming to Noosa. Fiona says the new coastal lifestyle certainly agreed with Raffa.

“As proof that Noosa offers a healthy lifestyle, Raffa shed two kilos in the past six months and is a picture of health, sporting a firm and well-shaped physique,” she says.

Raffa is a Lagotto Romangnolo, a Roman Lake Dog, so it’s clear his new-found love of water has always been in the blood. This small dog, no taller than knee-height, launches straight into the ocean, bounding over waves and splashing the water with his paws before trying to catch the droplets with his mouth. When a big wave comes, Raffa turns and paddles catching the wave to shore.

“Raffa has a great eye for safe passages in the sea and can catch a wave and bring it home with the best. He loves it and can be heard barking and yipping with glee as he looks for his next break!” Fiona says.

Adrian is a musician and Fiona has enjoyed a career working within the pet retail industry. It was in her Melbourne-based retail store that Raffa first started working alongside Fiona. He even had a name tag! So, when Raffa moved to Noosa just in time for his 10th birthday, he really was coming to retire.

Like many of us, he is enjoying spending his days soaking up the sunshine and taking long beach walks. He’s discovered a new vitality for life, and that’s something we can all hope to find.

“He was getting lazy in Melbourne,” Fiona says. “But since we have arrived in Noosa, he has a new lease on life.”


Fellow Furry Friends

Raffa isn’t the only pooch finding a peaceful and revitalising retirement in Noosa. Meet some fellow furry friends enjoying the benefits of the sun, surf and sand!


Breed: Bulldog
Age: 4

Humphrey lives in Noosa Heads and loves to get out on the paddleboard when the sun is shining. The Doggy Beach at the spit and Sunshine Beach are his favourite places to run free and play in the water and sand.




Breed: Kelpie
Age: 3

Bula was bred to work on the land, but this energetic pooch loves nothing more than a day spent in the water. Her favourite sports are frisbee, especially when her owners throw the frisbee overboard from the boat and she can jump off to get it. Bula loves paddle-boarding and body surfing waves back to shore.


About the Author /


Jolene has worked in the local media industry for more than five years. She is now a small business owner, mother to one sassy toddler and a newborn baby and loves to share stories about Noosa from its glorious food scene to the inspiring people.

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