Our beloved little Rory, who we adopted on the 10th of August 2014 from Monica’s DoggieRescue, sadly passed away on the 25th of February this year. Rory died almost exactly 10 weeks after his brother and companion (the 13 year old maltese tshi-tzu cross ‘Billie’). They both died of the same condition (heart murmur complications). Rory passed away peacefully and painlessly soon after he started hyperventilating as a result of his heart murmur.

I often think about Rory and miss looking after and caring for him. Rory came a long way in our care. Rory was by nature a very sweet natured little dog. When he first came to us he had the occassional aggressive outburst around what he perceived as a threat to his food/competition around food but this gradually dissappeared. Towards the end of his life he was such a mild natured little character it is hard to remember his initial angry outbursts.

Rory was always a little bit confused and one of the nick-names we had for him was ‘confused teddybear’. The last vet we took him to suggested that Rory had doggie dementia. Soon after Rory’s death we looked up this condition and found that the peculiar traits Rory displayed were pretty much textbook doggie dementia. Towards the very end of his life Rory appeared more confused than ever (maybe he missed Billie) and on the last walk I took him for he did a strange side-ways crab-walk and then tubmled over the edge of the pavement.

Rory became what I would describe as about 85% toilet trained in our care and the last year with us (we moved from a flat to a house) he had unlimited access to his own garden. There were the occassional accident inside but most of the time he had the best of all intensions.

When we first adopted Rory he had an unhealed scab under his chin. We later found out that this was related to tooth decay and after this was sorted out (he had dental surgery) he appeard to be a much happier dog.

We believe the last two and a half years of Rory’s life were very happy ones. I could definitely see an improvement in his sense of joy and even though he didn’t connect that well to people (although he responded to my touch by wagging his tail a little) he got so much joy out of interacting with Billie. We don’t know how much he was able to see and I think he was completely blind on one of his eyes.

Rory had a very bad case of arthrisis and his walking was restricted because of this. When we still lived in a flat I would often carry him to the nearest park because of this. But Rory’s love for playing with Billie would somehow make him ‘forget’ that he had a bad case of arthrisis and a sore leg. There were moments when he would just sprint alongside (or after) his best friend. This would especially be while going out for – and coming back from – a walk while we still lived in a flat with a long, narrow corridor which they would run up and down and play in.

One of the reasons we adopted Rory was so that Billie would have a companion. Rory fulfilled that role perfectly – and then some, remaining with his friend until the end. Rory very much seemed to admire Billie and we believe Billie was more important to Rory than Rory was to Billie. My last words to Rory was: ‘Say hello to Billie from mummy and daddy.’

Rory was absolutely amazing with our baby Hannah and he was there for the first year of her life. And it’s thanks to Rory Hannah now really loves dogs. We are just about to adopt our next rescue dog but this time a much younger dog. Caring for an older dog like Rory was a very rewarding and humbling experience and we look forward to caring for more senior dogs in the future when our daughter is a bit older.

Rory’s first year or so with us, he would often be found sleeping in the oddest spots, once I found him sleeping on top of a bag of high heeled shoes and he seemed drawn to power cables and would end up tangling himself up in them from time to time.

Rory will be remembered for all his little peculiarities and odd behaviour as well as his sweet innocence and helplessness. He had a very special ‘baby like’ charm.

We share so many happy memories of our beloved little dogs.


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