Luke, Bear

My co-worker gave me “Rescuing Sprite” for Christmas & I just finished it (in one day.) I am so touched by you and your family’s love for each other and your dogs. I have two dogs that I also truly live for. Luke is an eleven year-old Border Collie that we answered an ad in the local paper for-“Free full blooded Border Collie to good home” (of course, the conveniently omitted the fact that he is as deaf as a post.) We found this out after we got home, but my 5 year-old son said, “Well, he may not be perfect, but neither am I.” So, that began our life with a deaf dog that has turned out to be the absolute joy of our lives. He may be deaf, but is certainly not handicapped. We taught him hand signals that amaze everyone who has ever met him. We constantly get comments such as, “I wish my dog was trained that well; we sent him to obedience school & he doesn’t do near that!” Our neighbors thought that we had invisible fencing for the longest time because he won’t leave the yard (just because he’s not supposed to.) He is incredibly intelligent.

After ten years, enter Bear, 97 pounds of gentle giant. Bear belonged to a friend of mine who died suddenly in her sleep at age 46 from an unknown heart defect. Her daughter asked if we would take Bear. I reluctantly agreed, telling her that it was only with the intention of finding Bear a loving home, after all, Luke had been an only dog for 10 years and wasn’t exactly receptive to others that came to visit. He wasn’t aggressive, he was just not real pleased. We kept them apart for a few days, but with no luck in finding anyone who wanted this “beast”, we finally introduced them. They sniffed for awhile, but showed absolutely no signs of any animosity. I was SO proud of Luke. It was as if Luke knew that Bear had been through a horrible trauma losing his family and he graciously accepted him into his. They are now the best of friends and the closest of brothers. Bear is the ears that Luke never had.

I wish I had known about Sprite during his illness or had been closer to you guys. I am an MRI tech. For many years I have done scans on dogs for my personal vet without charge for dogs lovers here. (Please don’t print this as my employers aren’t aware!) We do it after hours. The outcomes have not always been good, but at least have given peace of mind to many. Now, another vet has caught wind and I’m doing some for her. I’m so grateful that I have the ability to help in some small way. It broke my heart to read of your anguish. I would have been honored to have helped you. If I ever can in the future, I know Kentucky is far away, but I’m here.

My dogs are both up in age and I will one day be faced with your situation.

Give my love to Pepsi, Griffen & your two-legged family.

Much Love,

Marilee from KY