Paolo, had been with us for 16 months before we said our heartfelt good-byes, six months after Mocha left us. He was healing well from his ACL operation, and on the road to recovery, relishing his new role as “resident dog” and mentor to his new housemate Charlie. He smiled his angelic smile through the initial bedrest and recovery, was right on schedule with his short, easy walks, and it seemed he’d be back to normal in no time. All of a sudden, he wasn’t putting any weight on his leg, and what we thought was a little plateau in the healing process, tragically turned out to be bone cancer that had spread very quickly and had metastasized from his lungs, which had both been stricken with cancer for some time. The oncologist and orthopedic surgeon in Victoria, where we had taken him, told us there was nothing they could do and there was only one decision to be made. Paolo was a “poster boy” for the Taiwan dogs, being in one of the first groups to come over.
We weren’t sure what to expect from a former street dog from a foreign country who wasn’t used to English. It became quickly apparent, that he was the perfect boy for us. We adopted him, as one of what we like to call “The Perfect Pair”, Paolo and Mocha. They both had the typical Golden personalities; very loving, gentle, eager to please, and affectionate, but they were both so different. They complemented each other and quickly became inseparable, feeding off each other’s enthusiasm, excitement, and joyfulness. Paolo had a special expression he wore, we used to call it “Paolo in Wonderland”, that can only be described as grateful and thankful looking, like he couldn’t believe that ever since he was loaded on that plane, he had encountered nothing but love and care, kindness and understanding. He was the sweetest boy, not only to all the people he met, but to all the dogs he met as well. Although he was initially apprehensive about going into the dog park, he quickly became the darling there. Whether it was puppies that wouldn’t leave him alone, or the big, fast ball-chasers, Paolo was a favourite of them all. He was the sweetheart of our neighbourhood, and had a wagging tail and an angelic smile for all who met him. He loved everything that his new life presented to him. He was the fastest learner at the doggie classes we took them to and was so proud of himself learning new tricks. He loved riding in the car with us, loved the beach and rolling in the water with his ball in his mouth, while Mocha charged out, swimming out to get hers. He loved his soft beds and enjoyed trading them when we had friends’ dogs come to stay. It was wonderful watching his confidence grow and his personality blossom, as well as watching his physical transformation. We used to tell him that he’d soon be growing his “Canadian fur coat” and did he ever! He grew the thickest, longest, most beautiful blond tail, and he looked so proud when we told him he was our “Best in Show Boy”. Our sweet, sweet boy Paolo, you brought so much love and laughter, you were loved and cherished, and are so missed. My only comforting thought is that Mocha was waiting for you at the Bridge, and is reassuring you and looking after you like she did when we first brought the two of you home.
Dawne and Larry
Apolo was adopted on October 29, 2014
This picture was taken a couple of weeks ago. Check out Paolo’s Canadian fur coat; he is going to be a blondie when it is fully grown in. He and Mocha (#2490) just graduated from obedience school on Wednesday night, and they will be starting a level 3 course in February. [Editor’s Note: Check out Mocha’s story for a hilarious rendition of their first night at obedience school.]
We still can’t believe how lucky we are to have these two beautiful dogs with us; there has not been one problem since leaving Portland with them.
Apolo’s Available Story:
Hi, I am Apolo (#2478) and I was found in a shelter in Taiwan. The story GBR got was that I was a street dog before, picked up and then taken to a shelter. I am very happy to be here now and I will be especially happy when I have found my ‘forever home’. I am a really sweet guy with a ‘‘solid gold’ personality.
They think I am about six years old. I went in to have a broken tooth pulled and the vet ended up pulling 9! I can still eat my kibble just fine though. My back legs were very weak when I arrived because I didn’t get to do much walking. I have gotten much stronger since my foster mom takes me on a walk (just a few blocks which she says makes about a mile) at least two times a day. This is very good for my hips. I don’t pull on the leash either. In the morning I am most perky and I toss around a toy for awhile. The vet said that I have some arthritis and mild hip dysplasia. That means that I am not a jogger or hiker but I sure like to walk. I like to sleep too! I have to take some medicine every day for the arthritis.
I get along just fine with all the dogs I have met. My foster brother and I are just starting to play a bit. I really don’t care much about cats, either way. I am sweet, sweet, sweet and gentle in every way. My foster mom can give me a bath and blow dry my fur, which is growing in better every day. I don’t mind having my ears washed out nor having dirt wiped off my paws. I will just gaze into your eyes. I sleep in a crate at night, but would love to sleep next to your bed, too. I am nice and quiet while I patiently wait for someone to letsme out in the morning. My foster parents live in a two story house and I cannot walk upstairs. I am learning to Sit, Let’s Go (walk), Out (out of the kitchen when cooking), Come (like to do that).
I hope my new home will be one level. I might need some help into the car if it is too high. I weigh about 50 pounds so I’m not too heavy. I will need to get some regular exercise, but not fast. I hope my people are home a lot or take me with them when they go. Other animals are fine, but I probably won’t mind being an only dog. Mostly I want to be loved and safe with my own special people.