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In Memoriam Murphy

APRIL 21ST, 1996 – AUGUST 6TH, 2010

Whoever Loveth Me, Loveth My Hound
Sir Thomas More (1478-1535)


One sunny Saturday afternoon I was walking with my two Kerry Blue Terriers, Murphy and Maggie, off their leashes in the park when a wedding party appeared on the scene and set up for photo shoots. The long flowing ash blond hair of the bride and her white silk and lace embroidered wedding dress lent an air of serene beauty to the milieu. Admiring the scene while the cameramen set up their equipment, Murphy, in his usual friendly manner walked over to the bride and began to sniff around the base of the cathedral train with dogged determination. After a few seconds of watching my curly black terrier do his thing I started to feel ill at ease, when suddenly he lifted his leg up high and piddled down the side of her silk dress. Stunned silence followed. The men in the party started shouting at me. I thought to myself: “Did this just happen?” Indeed it did. Reacting quickly, I hooked both leashes onto the dogs’ collars and headed out of the park at lightening speed, and not in the direction of my house. With terriers always expect the unexpected. Murphy was no exception.

Murphy was my man, my companion and my soul mate. He was without a doubt the most affectionate dog I have ever known. When he was in a kissy mood which was often he would wrap his legs around your neck and proceed to kiss you all over your face. He learned quickly whose faces he could slobber kisses over and whose were forbidden! Whether on the sofa or on the bed Murphy was the one to thump down beside you and push you over towards the end. Many a morning I would wake up with a leg dangling over the bedside.

Over the years we spent many hours hiking together from the Bruce Trail north of Toronto to the trails in Stowe, Vermont and more recently to the northern tip of Newfoundland where we walked the breathtaking coastal hiking trails around St. Anthony, one of my favourite places on earth. Murphy loved new cities. A resident of Montreal he was my travelling buddy visiting such cities as Halifax, Toronto, Ottawa, St. John`s, Cornerbrook and Quebec City. The Laurentian Mountains north of Montreal and The Eastern townships south were second homes to us for many seasons.
Murphy was a lesson to us all as he maintained his physical fitness state and his agility in catching and keeping tennis balls in his mouth. Many puppy antics remain embedded in my mind from dragging toilet paper around the house to the emptying of baskets and distributing their contents on the floor. Ugh! His curiosity in the basket area never faded as I recall him sticking his head in the recycling box a short time ago and throwing the papers all over the porch.
Aging is an inevitable process for humans and canines. I have always told myself that my dogs would not suffer needlessly because I believe it is not about us but about them. Murphy turned thirteen then fourteen this past April 21st. He was well, slower for sure but still enjoying all his favourite pursuits and people. In the beginning of August he started to become disinterested in life`s activities and his mobility declined. One day he was lying on his bed and did not want to get up. He looked up at me with those huge brown eyes and I knew. He never had to get up because my veterinarian and friend put him to sleep peacefully at home while he lay in my lap with my two other Kerries snuggled in close beside us.
I do not need to tell you dog lovers how much I will miss my Murphy. You know. I am left with a lifetime of wonderful memories. My last words to this great dog were simply; ``Thank you Murphy``.

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Today is May 22, 2019

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