Two much-loved King Charles Spaniels were the key consideration when Carol Petersen started looking to downsize into an independent lifestyle community.
Recently retired from a long career in emergency services communications, the 64-year-old was living in Townsville and looking for a change of scenery.
“I wanted a quieter lifestyle but didn’t want to be parted from the dogs that had been an important part of my life for 12-and-a-half years,” Carol said.
“The dogs are part of a package deal – if I was going to move they had to come too.
“Quite a few retirement villages don’t allow pets and some only permit one small animal that can’t be replaced when it passes away.
“That type of place didn’t suit me at all. I wanted to be part of a pleasant community that accepted pets.”
Carol found just what she was looking for at Oak Tree Retirement Village in Warwick.
Positioned near the peaceful Condamine River, the village has the benefit of wide open spaces perfect for walking dogs, picnicking by the riverbank or relaxing during an afternoon of fishing.
“I loved the vibe at Oak Tree the minute I walked through the gate,” Carol said.
“The added bonus for me was that my daughter, grandson and brother live nearby and other family members are not far away in Brisbane.
“My three-bedroom villa has more than enough room for me. I keep the second bedroom for visitors and the third bedroom is great for storage. There is a fenced yard for the dogs and a ramp was put in so they come onto the raised patio for protection from the weather when I am not home.
Carols loves to go walking with the dogs and spends quite a bit of time running around after her teenaged grandson. She also appreciates the ability to head off on trips without the bother of having to organise a house sitter.
“My villa is safe and secure and with staff on site I can go away without any worry at all,” she said.
“The place will be the same when I get back. It is very reassuring.
“The village offers a range of social activities and people are welcome to be as involved as they wish.
“Some like to be at the heart of all the social happenings while others prefer to do their own thing. There is no pressure or intrusion. Everyone is very friendly and welcoming.”