The Story of Rufus

When he got here

The conversation with my daughter began something like this:

“Don’t be mad, Mom…we’re getting a dog.”

I wasn’t really mad, but I was worried. The kids had NO disposable income – how on earth were they going to afford a dog? On the other hand, I’m one of those people for whom a house is not a Home without at least one canine companion, so I understood the desire…

Then I heard his story…

A Gal's Best Friend

One of my son-in-law’s co-workers was a volunteer at a local shelter. A dog had come in that was in serious need of placement. He wasn’t eating well, and had lost most of his hair, although a vet check said there were no mites, mange, or any good reason for it.

The kids went to look. As they walked down the long row of cages, the other dogs barked and jumped, wiggled and wagged. When they arrived at his cage, he sat quietly at the gate, and thumped his tail…

Love at first sight.

Angel loves him, too

He came home, and they named him Rufus.

It’s a mystery how he came to be in the shelter… Someone once cared for this dog. He has excellent House Manners (he’d rather explode than soil the floor) knows the basic commands, walks well on a leash, and has a sweet, loving disposition. The vet said he’s a purebred Shar pei , not an inexpensive dog…so why did no one ever come looking for him? It boggles the mind…

After landing at the kids’ house, his hair began to grow back immediately. Good diet, good family, and a regular routine can work wonders…But when they separated, and Sarah and the Boy moved down here, Rufus began to languish again. Long hours alone are not good for this dog…

Sleeping in the Living Room

You know what came next…here’s the proof, lying on my living room rug.

He’s a Good Dog. He adores the children, and everyone in the world should have someone who’s as excited to see them as Rufus is to see my daughter when she comes home from work (Hint: he’s even happier than Niko!) Even though he and Sweet Cleo will never be the best of friends, the nipping and chasing incidents are rare, now…

Teaching him to be a Country Dog will take a little longer, though… Outside, in his mind, is a place to pee, not a place to play. We have our daily walk and smell all the Smells, then he wants to go back in and stay there. He doesn’t ‘get’ birds, either…You can’t chase them, Buddy. They fly… Every time. The confusion on his face is priceless…

Handsome Boy!

What a handsome boy.


48 thoughts on “The Story of Rufus

  1. Welcome Rufus! I didn’t have a dog as a child so my daughter had a dog the entire time she was at home. I don’t have one now but enjoy hers – yes, she still has one. But, I am off to do chores and feed the chickens, rabbit, and goats. πŸ™‚

    • So true. We had a shepherd mix when the kids were little that was found by a coworker…best dog ever. Hard to take her anywhere in the car, though – she shook and slobbered, she was so frightened of it…

    • Thanks, Sheryl…my dogs have always just found me, without going to the shelter to pick one. A neighbor who worked for the rural electric district brought home a shy pup, a coworker found a shepherd – all lived out the rest of their lives with us, and we were all blessed πŸ™‚

  2. What a lovely story! Rufus is such a cutie and I’m so glad he’s found such a great home. I can relate to your worries in the beginning of this story. I had similar feelings when my youngest son and daughter-in-law announced they were getting a dog (when neither of them had jobs!!). Ah well. It’s working (and so are they), and I love visiting with Bo the Dog. Perhaps we’ll have a dog companion of our own someday.

    • At least they didn’t have a baby, too, the way Sarah and Joe did. I was also concerned about bringing an adult dog into the house with a rowdy toddler, but Rufus ADORES Niko, and he’s quite gentle. I love it when you take pictures of Bo – he’s a happy critter πŸ™‚

  3. I’m anxious to become one of his “fans”!! I think he’s already wormed his way into my heart. Maybe he needs to meet Fuzzy and Boomer to learn to be an outside dog!! LOL

  4. I am so glad that he has settled down and is being a good dog. It is not too bad a thing that he is a bit of a couch potato, much easier to assimilate into your noisy busy household. Though initially I was worried for you. What a beautiful old boy he is.. an old soul (hence all the lying about!) There is a tragedy in his past there, something terrible must have happened to his owner and they lost the dog.. or maybe stolen then abandoned, this happens.. lovely that after all that, he has washed up on your doorstep.. have a gorgeous day, are you getting this good weather too? c

    • We thought about stolen, but he wasn’t microchipped, so there was no way to look for an owner. Poor silly guy – the first time he saw a rabbit on the patio through the closed glass door, it was Bark, Scratch, THUD!, cry…. He’ll get it someday. πŸ˜‰
      The weather is FABULOUS – I actually got some weeding done today! It’s much easier, now that everything’s dying…

  5. My daughter adopted a rescue dog and discovered that he had distemper. Few vets in this generation know anything about the illness because they never see it, since the vaccine became available. Although there’s heartache ahead they love the dog, and he is gentle and tolerant with the children. We wish them well and hope for the best for the new, much loved pet.

    • How hard, to know they won’t have the dog for long, but he’ll bring them joy in the time they have…I’ve brought all sorts of animals into my life over the years, and never once regretted letting one stay. Hugs to your daughter and her family πŸ™‚

  6. He is adorable – quite a gentleman! Glad he’s loved… I can never understand how animals can be abandoned like that. His face is so sweet. πŸ˜€

  7. He is a very handsome boy, and a very lucky boy to have landed up in a great home. But he’s obviously a city dog – no country dog could wear a bow tie with that much style and confidence!

  8. I must be honest that I was worried when I first heard about Rufus and what seemed like a ‘bad fit’ with Sweet Cleo . . . all it took was a little time and patience. What a gentleman and gentle man he looks and the bow tie photo is absolutely priceless! Thanks you for the full story again . . . there is a big smile on my face too πŸ™‚ !

    • I was worried, too. It looked like it was going to be a choice between giving my old dog a peaceful life, and how Could I live with getting rid of my grandson’s dog…Thank Goodness it didn’t come to that! They’re still not allowed to be loose in the house together because of the kids, but they do ok outside…

  9. Handsome boy is right, Marie. What a beautiful dog! Rufus found the perfect family to join and it’s good to see that even Sweet Cleo is coming around. She may not be fully on-board yet, but, then again, it takes some of us a little longer to adjust to change. πŸ™‚

    • She won’t ever like him, but she only has to tolerate him, and not try to bite him…
      She’s getting much slower, poor old girl. Last night when I brought her inside, there was a rabbit not 10 feet away, and she never even saw it…

  10. What a lucky dog, he looks like he’s in heaven there and it’s so nice to hear his story. I can only imagine what he could tell you to fill in the blanks of his story. I’m not sure if it’s all good. Handsome, cute Rufus.

  11. We had a $3,000.00 Shar pei come into the shelter…she was just adorable. I wanted to keep her for myself. We bonded, but she really needed a home where she could be inside all the time. I came to walk her and only her daily. Then one day a man in a red convertible drove by us…he was very interested in the Suzy…I told him about the shelter and the $40 adoption fee… he followed us there. As I was taking off her leash she ran to his car and hopped inside. I do believe it was love at first site for both of them.

    I’m glad you have him. it seems most of these breeds are guard dogs of the indoor type.


    • That one was just meant to be…I hope she’s happy with her New Person.

      Rufus is SUCH a good boy…I can’t imagine anyone just dumping him. But he’s safe now, and loved…and the perfect Guard Dog for Niko’s bed πŸ˜‰

  12. I am crazy about Rufus!!!! He is adorable! He has such a sweet face and looks so gentle. Someone must have lost him while traveling. He must have been such a lost soul til you made him a part of your family. I would have taken him in a heart beat! My golden passed from cancer July 24th of this year. I have been feeling so sad. He just grabbed my heart! I am so happy he has people who love him and he is safe. What amazing people your children are to have seen him above all the others and gave him a second chance at a good life. πŸ™‚ I was born and raised in RI! It is a beautiful state!

    • Thanks, Mere! He’s a great dog…he and my daughter both got lucky to have found each other. Our Sweet Cleo is an aging Golden, half-blind and with a heart condition…I can’t bear the thought of living in a dogless house, and Hubby and I had started talking about bringing a younger dog home to ease the eventual and help her patrol the yard (the deer practically walk up to her now) when Sarah asked if Rufus could come live with us. Great solution for all!

      And now the obvious question: Which town did you grow up in? We’re in Portsmouth…

  13. Maisy was a golden retriever too. She was only five years old when she passed from lymphoma. She died at the hospital waiting for her first round of chemo/prednisone. It was a nightmare and it ripped our hearts out. We still hurt. She was such a happy girl and deserved so much more life. Maisy was with me 24/7. We adored her.
    We have another golden expected the first week of January. We will go throught the training once again.
    I pray we get to keep our new little girl at least 10 years. It is so hard to lose a member of the family who makes everyday better.
    Our home is so quiet. We are always anticipating her at every turn. From the moment we get up in the morning to when we go to bed at night. Maisy was so smart and kept her eyes on me all the time. She was like velcro when it came to me and I miss her all the time. I can finally make it through the day without falling apart.
    It is a good idea to get a younger pup to ease the inevitable pain of losing your dear Cleo. I feel for you and pray that she lives a lot longer. Goldens are exceptional dogs. Intellligent, loving, gentle, caring and always happy! They smile and there is no smile like that of a golden!
    The time is passing slowly til January, but I know that we had to go through the feelings of loss in order to give the love and devotion to another. Never to replace my Maisy girl. But a new little life to love and share our home and lives with. πŸ™‚
    I grew up in Barrington, Rhode Island! It was a great place to grow up and our home was right on the water. Now I am landlocked! LOL My husband and I farm in North Dakota! We grow hard red spring wheat and soybeans.
    I love your blog! So nice to meet you!

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