I'm sad to share that my friend Muttley left us a few short days ago. He was at least 15 years old, could of been older, but he had been part of our lives here for 13 years, and it is most strange without him.
I first met Muttley back in 2000, I was in a bad place, my husband had been unfairly dismissed from his job, and we were fighting a court case, our house had been burgled, the house was tied to the job, the land I kept my horses on was tied to the house. I knew that it was only a matter of time before we we had to move, and I wouldn't be able to keep the horses and I was off of work with depression. The break in was the last straw for me, we had lost our elderly Doberman a few months before, and I knew that no one would of got past her, so operation new dog began.
The search was narrowed down to must be a bitch, short haired, larger and an adult. We visited many rescues to see what they had, listed with the Doberman Rescue, but nothing was working. We widened our search a little, but both if us were in our hearts looking to replace our much loved and much missed bitch. Then one day I saw an ad for a Doberman Cross dog at a kennels a couple of hours away, we decided to go and see him, but were majorly disappointed to find that the cross was a perfect Doberman coat, stretched over a Basset Hound body, kind of cute, but not what I wanted. I sadly walked along the line of kennels, and then I saw this badly made hearth rug lying against the bars in a kennel, and when I spoke to it eyes appeared at one end, and Muttley and I looked at each other for the first time, and the rest as they say is history.
We took him for a walk, he made me smile, with his roley poley gait, he made me sad, because of his patchy coat recovering from the skin condition that he had, and then when we came back to the kennels and I say on a bench and he put his nose in my lap, he made me cry, we had chosen each other. Funny how our large smooth coated bitch turned out to be a medium size broken coated dog, but Oh well. We passed the home checks, convinced the rescue that we could deal with difficult dogs, he had been rehomed and returned a couple of times, and a couple of weeks later we got to bring him home.
For the first two days I spent most of the time sat on the floor hugging him, he was so scared and just wanted comfort. It wasn't all easy going, he was scared of so many things, he wasn't properly house trained, had no idea how to play. Time and patience won in the end and he blossomed into a right little character, a clown, with not a nasty bone in his body.
He moved house with us twice in England, and then took the long journey out here to Canada with us, and adapted to all his new places so well, he was a star. We had been worried about him for a long time, ad this winter was hard for him, we kept him on his pain pills, but he mainly ate, slept and toddled outside for his bathroom breaks. I spent a lot of time sat with him looking into those eyes, and he was still with us, behind the grey hair, the cataracts, despite the senility, the real Muttley was still there.
Over the last 2 weeks he was doing really well, I suddenly found him at my heels as I was going around doing chores outside, and he was even trying to play ball with the rest of the guys, before remembering that actually the old bones weren't so good at that anymore. The big storm we had this week though was just to much for him, and he decided that it was time.
While I am sad and I miss the old guy, he lived out a natural span, and I think the last two weeks were his last fling. He came a long way from an unloved city street dog, and he filled our lives and I hope we filled his.
If indeed there is a heaven then Muttley is for sure there, because he was always GOOD BOY Muttley