Muggie on Long beach in Tofino
Where to begin...My family has been very sad, as we have been dealing with the loss of our beloved dog, Muggins or Muggie as we called her. She has been part of our family for 13 years and she was an amazing intelligent loving little rescue dog. She came to us in 1999 when my daughter was 2.
My hubby and I discussed getting a dog, but never could decide what breed, big, little, or medium sized. I keenly missed my dog when I got married, but we were prohibited from having one when we lived on our floathome. So when we moved off and back onto land I would broach the topic from time to time and then we would just get busy with our life.
My mom and dad really wanted to get a dog for their granddaughter and I conspired with them. Sometimes you have to act and then ask for forgiveness after the fact. One day I got a telephone call from my folks, they had found a lovely little black and white Bichon Shih Tzu who was between 1-3 years old, she was at a shelter. (This is where the sneaky side of me comes out) I desperately wanted my little girl to experience growing up with a dog. Anyone who has ever had a dog or cat when they were a kid knows of the special bond and love you have with a pet. So along came Muggie.
Muggie's start was sad because a young couple who were breeding dogs decided to break-up and when they went their separate ways they booted the puppies out the door. This was up north and it was in October/November when it happened and it was really cold. Apparently the neighbours rescued two of the three pups, but unfortunately Muggie was on a grand adventure it would seem and she was elusive. One day someone found this poor miserable matted little waif and took her to the shelter. That was a fortuitous day as my dad just happened to drive by the shelter and decided to pull in and take a look at the dogs.
One of the shelter workers accidently took my dad back to the room where Muggie was and at that point she wasn't up for adoption, again fate intervened. My dad is a charming fellow and somehow talked the caregiver to letting him see the stinky little doggis. He said when he saw her she ran to him, bolted into his arms and it was love at first sight. Dad called my mom and she came down to see the wee doggis and again it was love at first sight. You may be wondering how Muggins got her name, when my dad looked at her he said to my mom, "She has such a cute little mug", so they called her Muggins.
This is the part where the begging for forgiveness comes in.... My mom arranged to fly down for a visit on December 5th, she was bringing a furry package. I still had not told my hub what was happening, because I knew when he saw her it would be love. Fates were conspiring against me a little though, Kirk ended up having to go out of town and had no idea what was waiting for him on his return. He actually called and was talking to our daughter, remember she was 2 - she spilled the beans to her dad. I can still remember her side of the conversation, "We have a doggy Da da". Uh Oh! Of course he wanted to speak to mommy and lets just say he wasn't all that thrilled and was a tad upset. I didn't let that phase me because I was already in love with the dog and eventually he would be too.
When Kirk came home he had a very stern look on his face when I met him at the door with child, dog and mother-in-law in tow. But then just as I knew would happen the cute little ball of fluff sat up on her haunches and crossed her paws, almost looking like she was praying, she whimpered and looked cute. The rest is history, I promised Kirk I wouldn't do that again and I apologized and he forgave me. After that Muggie and Kirk were inseparable. She was smart as a whip and we taught her several tricks and she was a great loving little dog who loved to eat bacon, hang out and go to Tofino and roam on the beach. She was a sociable little creature and used to go visit our neighbours for snacks.
This summer somehow I felt that it was going to be her last. My hubby and I were on a beach walk in Tofino and I leaned over and hugged him as we watched Muggie romp like a puppy, but I felt very sad suddenly and said to him, "I think this is going to be Mugg's last summer." I have no idea why I thought this. She was starting to slow down a little, but when you are a 15 year old lady that is normal. Muggie had a glorious vacation, played on the beach, ate bacon, pancakes and potatoes (her faves) and snuggled with our daughter. It was a great summer.
Early in the morning on Sunday, September 16th, our beloved little girl suffered 2 heart attacks. We took her to the vet, he explained that he could possibly get her through the crisis, but her life would be one with lots of medication and drastically altered, she would not be able to go for walks or even up or down stairs. He also indicated that it was a matter of months only and we decided that we did not want to be selfish and that Muggie needed dignity, love and respect and we had to have courage to do the right thing and let her go. I was with my sweet girl when she crossed the rainbow bridge and it was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do, but when you love a dog you have to sometimes make this hard decision. She was gone in a whisper and a look of peace came over her face. I cried and cuddled her and said my goodbyes. Our family's grief was palpable and we felt as though we had lost a part of us. We have been very lucky because our family and friends have been very supportive and loving and it has made it easier to bear. Muggie's ashes are home and are in a special place and I talk to her as I go by. I know she is running on the beach and chasing butterflies and with her puppy friends that have gone before her. Rest In Peace my beloved little friend, you are missed and loved.
"It was love right from the start, Nose to nose, heart to heart, Forever together our love lives on, I feel you here, though you are gone." *verse on a prayer flag given to me by a friend
Muggie on her way to Tofino to run on the beach.