Sir Ruffaford Augustus- the world's oldest Sheepdog

by Heather
(Spokane, WA)

Rufus always had a smile on his face

Rufus always had a smile on his face

My husband and I adopted Rufus, a sheepdog, in February 2006. The woman we got him from was moving and not allowed to have a pet. Rufus was already very old- 15 years- but perfectly healthy in every other way. You would never know his age unless you saw him lay down or stand up which seemed to take ages to do. He got along famously with our other dog Benson, who was 7. They were like peanut butter & jelly, they just 'went' together.

Rufus' arthritis began to get worse after he turned 17. We had a birthday party with some friends because you can't turn 150 dog years without some sort of celebration. We decided to put him on medication which really seemed to help. Toward the summer of 2008 Rufus slowed down A LOT. He started having difficulty standing to eat and would lean against the wall when he did. He wouldn't play like he used to and was having trouble 'holding it' until we got home to let him outside to potty. It was an enormously difficult decision we made to finally put Rufus to sleep on July 26, 2008.

We decided he would get the most wonderful last meal- a steak with vegetables and a small scoop of vanilla ice cream. Our vet was very sympathetic and let us hold him on his blanket while she administered the drugs. I think he knew what was happening and was so calm. Dogs usually don't close their eyes when they pass, but he did. It was like he really just fell asleep which still breaks my heart whenever I think about it.

We only had him for a short time, but Rufus just made the days better. He was so happy-go-lucky and loved everything. We recently moved and, while cleaning out our clothes closet, I found a little turd on the floor. Rufus used to run and hide in the closet and poop whenever there was thunder. I thought I had cleaned it all up after the last time, so this (although gross) was very upsetting. It was the most hysterical thing I've ever seen a dog do!

Love you Roofie.

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