A Dog's Last Will and Testament

Every rescue dog’s story has two sides – how the rescue dogs ended up in need of a new home and how the new home came to choose those dogs...

You see, when we ended up seeking a new home, Katherine and Iain, our owners-to-be already had a dog. She was called Tai (see below) and she was a Lab-Collie cross, and she was 364 days younger than we were. They got her when she was three years old from a loving family who sadly had to give her up due to their new child being highly allergic to dogs.

She came home to them on All Hallows Eve (Halloween), Iain went to pick her up as Katherine was working that night. Tai was the ideal first dog, sure she had a few problems the main one being no recall and a bit of a desire to chase but these were soon sorted out with a bit of training. But aside from that, Tai was a happy, confident doggie and an ideal first pet for Iain who had never had a pet of any kind before!

So there they were, already taken by a doggie and while they may have been considering taking on another dog taking on two would have been out of the question so there was no space for us in the picture. Sadly though, life can work in some cruel ways. As we (Millie and Fly) were entering the rescue Tai’s days were numbered. Following a happy holiday in Orkney, all was not well with Tai. She had swollen up and after a trip to the vets, investigative surgery was taken due to Katherine’s concerns. The concerns were well-founded, Tai’s belly had filled with fluid.  The horrible call from the vet came, they had a couple of options and they opted for further investigation while she was still under. The first fear was the dreaded “C” word, but cancer was soon ruled out. The cause of Tai’s illness was a mystery and samples of her liver were sent away. The final diagnosis was Cushing’s Disease. This disease is not normally fatal, many dogs can live happy lives albeit on medication permanently. For Tai though, this was not to be an option. For whatever reason her liver would not recover. Tai died on 28th October 2011.

A Dog's Last Will and Testament

Before humans die, they write their last will and testament, give their home and all they have to those they leave behind. If, with my paws, I could do the same, this is what I'd ask.
To a poor and lonely stray I'd give my happy home; my bowl and cozy bed, soft pillow and all my toys; the lap, which I loved so much; the hand that stroked my fur; and the sweet voice that spoke my name.
I'd will to the sad, scared shelter dog the place I had in my human's loving heart, of which there seemed no bounds.
So, when I die, please do not say, "I will never have a pet again, for the loss and pain is more than I can stand".
Instead, go find an unloved dog, one whose life has held no joy or hope, and give my place to him.
This is the only thing I can give...
The love I left behind.

It was a certain two Border Collies that were set to inherit the home Tai had left empty. While we weren’t strays nor had we been unloved, we had been waiting for our new home at Mrs Murray’s Home for Stray Dogs and Cats for around four months. We ourselves were the silent victims of divorce, our previous family had split up and no one could keep us (or Lucy, an older collie we also lived with) so all three of us ended up in rescue.

Lucy was lucky and quickly found a new loving home, she could be re-homed separate from us, but we were closely bonded and ideally needed a home together. By pure coincidence Katherine found Lucy’s new owner on an unrelated forum! So we know how Lucy has been getting on and that she is happy and well. 

Katherine and Iain decided before Tai died that they would get another dog. As both were fond of collies and Katherine was wanting active walking and cycling companions, Border Collies were the breed of choice. Sadly there were lots and lots of collies coming into the rescues, but two collies on Mrs Murrays Home For Stray Dogs and Cats website stood out from the crowd.

The day after Tai died, they came up to pay us a visit. They could only look at us and not come in and say hello as they needed permission from their landlady to allow us in their home, but she had no objections and e-mailed through the permission (after a bit of fun with fax machines).

That Friday on the 4th November, a week after Tai had passed away, we said goodbye to the lovely staff at Mrs Murray’s who had taken care of us for four months and off we went to inherit our new life with a new family.

We would like to thank the staff and volunteers at Mrs Murray's Home for Stray Dogs and Cats for finding us our new home two years ago, and for finding homes for so many others who have came through their doors since.

Millie, Fly and Katherine T



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