Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Remembering Our Collies


For 21 years, we had collies.  These were the years our son Tim was growing up.  First we had Michael, "Mike."  Tim named him Mike..  (Tim is our only child.)  Mike was the perfect Collie.  He was just like Lassie.  He was a sable colored beautiful Collie.  He was also the best dog we have ever had in our 45 years of marriage.  He left the yard only once, and got into the neighbor's garbage, my husband Dave disciplined him, and honestly I can't remember him over disobeying in any way again!  We let him outside without tying him up, and we had no fence at that house.   He never left the yard or our driveway!  He never barked at things or people.  He just stayed in the house, and when he went outside, stayed in the yard!   Neighbors and friends all told us we'd never get another dog like Mike again, but we didn't believe them. We thought that's just how collies naturally came.  My husband, Dave, use to have an old Van that he'd take Mike on errands with him in.  He always left the van  sliding door open and told Mike to stay as he went into neighborhood stores. Mike ALWAYS did, too!  (This was not at big shopping centers or huge malls.)  Mike had to be put to sleep due to serious health problems at age 10.  Right before Christmas. That was the saddest Christmas we ever had.  Tim wrote a story about Mike, and my Dad read it outloud before we had our Christmas Eve celebration.  (Tim was about 13 or so then.)  There was not a dry eye in the house.  Oh, we missed him so much. 

About 2 months later both my husband Dave and I had been searching the want ads for another Collie, but we didn't tell each other. When we did talk about it, we said, "Oh, it's way too soon to get another dog."  I was working part time at the time, and Tim was in school and after school activities.  We didn't know if it would be fair to get a dog who would be left alone that much.  However, it was only a matter of time.  One night I came home from work, and I was honestly not too surprised to see another Collie pup.  I had said we were getting a girl this next time, and so I excitedly greeted the new puppy, saying, "her" and "she."  Well, it turned out "she" was another "he."  His name was Joshua Joe.  Dave and Tim found him advertised in the paper. The people that had him had a little one year old and the wife was again pregnant. They loved Josh, but said he was too active for them with their little children.  This Collie was not naturally docile, or "perfect."  He was a wild guy as a puppy!    But in time he settled down, and when he was out of his puppyhood, he became a wonderful dog as well.  (Though not as obedient as Mike had been, he was still a great dog and we loved him!)  He lived for 11 years.  We had to put him down due to a variety of things, arthritis in his hips and back legs, and etc.  It was horrible. We did not get another Collie.  We had gotten our first Bichon Frise, (my soulmate) Jessica Sue.  She had brought old Josh back to life for a while, but Collies just have a shorter life span than little dogs.  It was time for Josh to go.  Still, always, I remember the Collies and so does my husband Dave and our son Tim.  When I read this article.  I had to share it along with my story of two wonderful and beautiful dogs we loved and will always remember.  We know that they are at the Rainbow Bridge waiting for us.  Together, along with some of our Bichons who we lost in the years that followed, we will then go (hopefully) into Heaven. 

I hope you enjoy this story, I did.



by Angela Walker

      It all started when I was scrolling through an online classified site.
      I normally just conduct a search by typing COLLIE in the search bar.  On this day, I had the time and decided to scroll through all the ads when an ad titled DOG LEFT TO DIE, in a neighboring town,
caught me attention, so I click on it.
      The ad was posted by a concerned citizen who for days had
watched a Collie standing or laying on the side of the road waiting
for his owners, who had obviously dumped him, to come back for him. She stated he was mangy and very emaciated and that they should be ashamed of themselves for leaving such a devoted, loyal, forgiving dog to fend for himself.
      She hadtried several times to catch him but every time she got
close he took off.  I emailed the poster to find out the specifics.
      The very kind lady emailed me back to say that she had posted
the ad the day before and thought that he had not survived the
terrible storms the night before because she had not seen him.  She
had searched several times that morning and around noon.
      I emailed her back and told her most strays will come out of
hiding in the early morning or late evening hours when it is cooler.
At 8pm that night she replied to say she had seen him again on a
different street but he was obviously on the move now, looking for
      This was wonderful news.  Now we knew he was still alive.
      By 8:30 that night two other Houston Collie Rescue volunteers
and I had come up with a plan -- we would meet the next morning and scour the neighborhood.
      We met the next morning and decided to take one vehicle.  We
turned down the street where he was last seen.  I was looking on one
side of the street, and the two other volunteers, Barb and Virginia
were searching the other side.
      All the sudden, Virginia spotted him standing on an empty lot.
We all get out of the vehicle and formulated a plan to catch him.
      When we first got out of the car he took off running from us.
So, I went straight toward him while Virginia and Barb came at him
from the very far side of the empty lot.  I had canned dog food on
the plate and Barb said, "Call him Laddie."  (For some reason,
everyone names their Collies Laddie or Lassie.)
      I started calling him, telling him what a wonderful, pretty,
precious boy he was.  I sat down on the ground with the food at arm's length and kept calling him in my baby, happy voice.  When he got a foot away, he slinked down to the ground and crawled to the plate on his belly.
      I then gently touched the top of his head and with the other
hand slipped the leash over his head.  Once he finished eating he
pranced to the car.  I was almost in tears.
      Thiswas my first stray dog rescue and I know they won't always
be that easy.  He was tired of running and was so hungry I think he
was ready to be caught.  He gave us all Collie kisses before we
loaded him in the kennel for the ride to Virginia's, who will foster
      I believe it was God's will that we rescued this baby.  Why did
I scroll through the ads, instead of narrowing my search?  Why was it so easy to catch him with the kind citizen couldn't?
      He will have to complete heartworm treatment before he is
adopted, but we will see him through that.
      From this day on he will have the life that every dog should
have but unfortunately, far too many don't.

             -- Angela Walker    <karasaunt at>


1 comment:

seraphoflove9001 said...

aawww, that was beautiful Merry! I enjoyed reading this. Thank you for sharing!