Terrance, now Paddy Murphy
It all started with a call on December 27th. I was just settling down and getting back to work after Christmas when Eileen Andrade rang. She wanted to know if my girlfriend, Meghan, happened to still be back in the Dallas/Fort Worth area for the holidays. Indeed, she was. Meghan and I had been looking for a Kerry boy for several months to no avail. We had visited breeders, been to shows and made countless calls, but we just hadn't found the right match. Eileen thought that day, so close to the Christmas festivities, she had found our belated Christmas gift. His name was Terrance, but his foster mom, Sue Gastrock, had decided to call him Paddy and there must have been some telepathic connection because we had already decided Terrance would have to be renamed after the gangster Paddy Murphy.
He was 5 1⁄2 months and still a fairly little guy. Eileen knew what we were looking for, and Paddy was all that and more. He was a real live wire, she told us, full of spit and vinegar but a real lover all the same. Meghan was able to visit since Paddy was being fostered in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, and she hopped in the car and headed over to see him. He was his sweet and loving self, but she told Sue that she just couldn't take him home. Fortunately for all involved, Meghan didn't make it ten miles down the road before she called me to tell me we had to have him. On New Year's Eve we faxed in the contract and Paddy would be ours in just a few short days.
A massive winter storm front was scheduled to arrive in the Bay Area on Friday, January 4th and so was our puppy, now dubbed Paddy Murphy. The winds were gusting at 35 miles an hour that afternoon, so strong they couldn't open the cargo door to get him off the plane. So we waited a little longer and soon enough he came our way down the terminal. As soon as we could get the crate open he burst out and started licking us furiously.
And he hasn't stopped since. He's got abundant Kerry energy and he likes to direct it towards loving people and exploring new places, but we are containing that enthusiasm with some solid training. He completed his first obedience class in February and is starting his Graduate level class this Thursday. He loves to ride in the car, and we have been all over California in the few short months that he has been with us. We've played in the snow at Tahoe, hiked in the mountains in the East Bay, frozen our tails off in the ocean at Carmel-by-the-Sea and relaxed at Redondo Beach in LA.
It's hard to believe that he started out in a puppy mill in Oklahoma and was almost auctioned off. Before he came to us he was even traded in exchange for another dog's meds. It's been a long strange trip for Paddy, but he never shows any signs of nervousness or skittishness. He loves meeting new people and new dogs and likes to explore. He's really popular with the neighborhood kids and even fetches like a retriever. We can't thank Eileen enough for the joy she has brought us, and we also want to thank Sue Gastrock for fostering this great dog.
Slaínthe, Paddy Murphy, Meghan and Andrew
Subject: [KBL] Paddy Murphy's support team
Date: March 20, 2008 10:47:43 AM PDT
I need to add to the story of Paddy Murphy and let you all know who his support team were in the crucial months of his rescue. In my haste to forward Andrew's note yesterday I didn't stop to give credit where credit is due - Paddy would not be in the loving home he is in today were it not for the following people:
The Foundation Scanning Team first found the mention of this Kerry boy with a private rescue/adoption organization in Oklahoma. He had been traded to that organization by a broker in order to cover vet fees for another dog in her "care".
In discussion with our rescue team Tracey Fulmer assigned me the honor of dealing with this boy's relocation and adoption. I contacted Tom Sawyer for help in finding someone to pull him out of Oklahoma. Tom started contacting his team in Texas.
Carol Vesey donated $150 to pay the fee that the private rescue organization required for Terrance and armed with this commitment and true Kerry-loving resolution Cindy Hatzfeld drove through snow and ice on Christmas Eve from Texas to Oklahoma and back to bring this boy to a safe and loving Kerry foster home with Sue Gastrock.
Sue and her dogs proceeded to love and care for Terrance, renaming him Paddy. In Sue's care Paddy was groomed and cuddled and played non-stop with her Kerry and her Poodle. Sue informed me that he would need to move on fairly quickly or he never would as she and her husband were fast falling in love!
After a couple of phone calls and emails I was secure that Meghan was actually in Texas and could meet Paddy, and equally important Sue - as she needed to pass muster with Sue for us to even consider Paddy becoming hers and Andrew's. Meghan and her mother drove to meet Paddy at Sue's and from there on in Andrew's story tells the tale.
They say "it takes a village" to educate and care for a child. It also takes a village to rescue a dog. You need the right people in the right place at the right time, or if they aren't there you need someone willing to give up the time to travel and get to the right place at the right time (we know that Cindy was a true Christmas blessing to this rescue). Without the safe haven of Sue Gastrock and her family I don't know what we would have been able to do for this wonderful boy. If you are touched by the tale of Paddy please consider volunteering to foster. We never know when and where we are going to need a foster home - if you let us know that you are willing and able you can never tell how quickly you may be called on. Finally there is the financial wherewithal. Money is important - without funds we can't move these dogs out of bad circumstances, we can't obtain vet care for them, we can't ship them to their forever homes and we can't provide the ongoing support to help them recover. So please consider making a monetary donation to the Foundation, which will help to defray these expenses.
So, to recap, team Paddy includes:
The Shelter Scanning Team
and many, many more.....
We thank you all!
Rescue Coordinator for the Southwest
Subject: Update: Paddy Murphy (rescued December 2007)
Date: June 25, 2009 1:32:18 PM PDT
Update: Paddy Murphy
25 June 2009
Paddy Murphy has risen to every challenge we've given, and we're so proud of him! Back in February he was the first in his class to pass the Canine Good Citizen exam and finished with flying colors.
From there we started to explore the idea of using him as a service dog for Flight Anxiety. After wooing both human and veterinary doctors alike he was certified as an Emotional Support Animal and has proven himself a valuable in-flight asset. His first flight was a short hop from Dallas to Austin, TX. The folks at the DFW American Airlines desk were expecting us, and when we arrived we got the red carpet treatment. Apparently Paddy Murphy carries himself with an air of dignified authority because we strolled right through security and onto the plane where a bulkhead seat awaited us. After greeting the gentleman next to me, he nuzzled against my legs then curled up at my feet. He had no problem with takeoff and showed only fleeting interest in the passing drink cart. He sat up and looked around when we touched down but never showed signs of concern and stayed focused on his handler the entire time.
The second flight, from Austin to San Jose, proved slightly more difficult since the gentleman at the check-in desk was apparently unfamiliar with the process. TSA showed a little more concern in Austin as well, but the supervising officer seemed more interested in his beautiful blue coat than his ESA papers. As you may know, opiates and other drugs are often used to treat patients with flight anxiety, but a service dog is a great alternative to doping yourself, and I highly recommend it!
Among Paddy Murphy's other recent accomplishments...
He proved his terrier toughness during a rigorous hike through the Sierra Nevada on the Tahoe Rim Trail during inclement weather (3 degrees and snowing!). And just the other day he surprised us all by out-swimming a Golden Retriever, paddling smoothly past the others to fetch tennis balls more than 40 yards out. But the biggest surprise of his new waterdog career came when he dove completely underwater to retrieve a stick that sank to the bottom!
We're so proud of this fella and couldn't be happier that his previous owners were dim enough to miss his amazing potential. Once again, many thanks to
all of the volunteers and the wonderful people at the Kerry Blue Terrier Foundation for bringing this great dog into our lives.
Phi Alpha's Irish Gangster "Paddy Murphy" CGC, ESA