Perhaps the only bonus of being unable to work for many years, has been that I have been able to have dogs. They have been a part of my life since I was a nipper within the family and later, having left the Royal Air Force in 1989. I am a lover of large dogs and it is probably fair to say that over the years they have got larger. Always marvellous Mental Health assistants & I would like to think that I have always done my best for them. For some reason I always seem to have wonky dogs as my family & friends call them. Dogs that would have had much shorter lives, had we not found each other, I have been told.
Albert & Rufus, despite my hopes, have followed in this unwanted tradition. The brothers were born October 1st, 2016. Four generations of learning were lost when Wilbur due to bone cancer was unable to pass it on. I had gone to Scotland to get him a pal, he was ready as Murphy had died in the July. Between arranging to go to Scotland and going, I lost Wilbur suddenly. I decided to travel anyway as the silence at home was deafening. They were six weeks old and all I did was watch them for a while. Then in a mad moment I said, I’ll have those two. I did not want to create what I had been trying to put right for Wilbur, by bringing just the one. I have always had dogs in pairs. Quite frankly, living with me can be quite boring sometimes and at least they have each other. They arrived here on November 26th, eight weeks old.
On July 4th, 2017, Rufus was diagnosed with chronic hip & elbow dysplasia. This was devastating, and I thought that he was lost. I have them both insured, but not to the extent that new hips could ever be a reality. When I saw my Vet Mr Davison with him following the diagnosis, I was soon to realise that he would not be lost at this time. Pain management was the way forward and in time, a really fulfilled life. When the pain was under control Hydrotherapy was suggested as the way forward. At this point I met Pam & now, Rufus is a new boy. He is healthier than he has ever been, all down to the Hydrotherapy he has been having for over a year now. Before, everything he did came at a painful price. Albert also has the Hip and elbow dysplasia but nowhere near the extent to which Rufus has & has also been introduced to Hydrotherapy. The brothers now play in the garden in such a way that I could only have imagined. We still have a way to go yet, but the next phase begins soon as they are two years old on October 1st and should have stopped growing, finally. They are a Giant Breed, but they are both very large. Rufus’s growth rate, extraordinarily so. It is like he has outgrown his skeleton, even to the extent that he has always had his tongue settled outside his mouth from the moment he got here. Rufus is also the calamitous one, if anything is going to happen, it has & does happen to him. Albert weighs in at 78.8 Kilograms, Rufus 91.4 Kilograms.
Despite everything I love them dearly & I would not be without them. They are truly brothers in arms. They have marvellous temperaments; love people and it’s is true when I say that their photographs have made it to many parts of the world. They enrich my life & I think it is fair to say that they do the same, to those who meet them.