His name was Magoo when I adopted him in May 2015. But that name didn’t reflect this dog’s dignified gentlemanly demeanor and I called him Murray. Several times a day when I told him I love you, Murray, I added “You are a wonderful gentleman.”
And he was indeed. The first night he was here, blind though he was, he made his way from my bedside to the doggie door in the kitchen so as not to make a mess in the house, and he was lying on the deck in the morning.
In addition to having no vision, Murray had lost his sense of smell and taste, had stiff hind quarters and, although he could hear, he couldn’t tell where the sound was coming from. Yet, often I asked how he was feeling and always he said, “I am happy.” I feel very fortunate in being able to telepathically communicate with animals.
Murray told me he loved roaming around the large fenced area because he knew he was safe and he enjoyed eating breakfast and dinner—his meals had several ingredients with different textures. Going for a ride was a special treat. A portable ramp enabled him to easily get in and out of the back part of my van, where he was comfortable on one of his four big beds, and every time I drove somewhere, he and his four siblings went with me.
Several months after Murray joined our dog family, an 8-year old dachshund who had been an “only child” came to live with us. It gave peace of mind to her terminally ill mother to know that Peanut would be well cared for the rest of her life. Peanut expressed her unhappiness at being left here by snapping at Murray every time he came near her. Telling her to please be sweet to him, he is a dear gentle dog, didn’t work, and I told him I was sorry she wasn’t nice to him. He said, “It’s all right. She misses her real mommy. ”
Murray had been here about a year when I asked how he was feeling and he said his eyes hurt. The veterinarian who saw him the day after I adopted him said he was about 10 years old and eventually pressure would build due to his deeply entrenched cataracts. The time had come to remove his eyes. He asked me to thank his doctor for helping him, and while the sockets still were healing, he told me, “I feel much better without my eyes.”
It was May 23, 2017—two days after Murray started eating only part of his meals—when he told me, “I don’t feel good,” and we went to the clinic. Tests showed he was in renal failure. He said, “I am ready to go there to stay.” That is how all my dogs refer to heaven. They are multi-dimensional and go back and forth, and when they are in that spirit world, their bodies are youthful and perfect.
Murray said, “Mommy, thank you for letting me go there to stay and thank my doctor.” During the minutes I sat beside him after his soul had moved on, he sent me two images. In the first his fur was gleaming and he posed as proudly as if he had just won Best in Show at Westminster. Then he sent me a close-up of his face so I could see his clear sparkling eyes before he ran back to the dogs who had greeted him.
It was a joy and a privilege to have Murray with me for his last two years on Earth. I miss him and always will love him just as I do all the others who went before him. It is comforting to know he is with them and that someday I will be, too.
Such a distinguished gentleman as Magoo needed a name more in keeping with his presence, so he became Murray. Since he came seven weeks ago, he has happily settled in and is doing well. The second morning he was here, he found his way to the doggie door and went outside – quite a feat! Learning to come back in took about two weeks, a more “normal” time, I’d think, for a blind dog to adjust to new surroundings. It’s understandable that he still needs some guiding around inside, but outdoors he’s totally independent – he goes exploring all over the two fenced acres and comes back inside when he’s ready.
Health-wise, Murray is flourishing. He gets fresh vegetables and chicken breast along with his former diet of dry food and pumpkin, and the family veterinarian added glucosamine and Previcox to his daily vitamins, pain meds and eye drops. Also, his weepy eyes are benefiting from a change in allergy medication.
Murray’s serenity and patience are remarkable! He greets guests courteously and was completely comfortable with the staff at the veterinary clinic and the groomer’s shop. He feels my love for him and the other three dogs, and even though all four basically are “loners,” by now there is a heartwarming camaraderie among them.
His new siblings in the pictures are 8-year-old Princess, three-legged German Shepherd, and little blind Dubby, 17-year-old spaniel mix who was rescued from a puppy mill when he was 10. Jasmine, a 10-year-old Lhasa Apso, scampered out of camera range.
Magoo was adopted on May 17, 2015.
Magoo’s Available Story:
Anyway, let me tell you a bit about myself. I’m a golden retriever between five and seven years old. I am very well behaved and super sweet. I’ll just love it when you pet me, and I will quickly roll onto my back to let you rub my tummy – my favorite thing. I get along with dogs of all sizes, even the snarky one at my foster home. He doesn’t like it when I accidentally bump into him — he’s not very understanding. But I don’t let it hurt my feelings; I just walk away. My foster mom also has a cat. And if I had good eyesight, I would love to chase her. But since I can’t see, she always sneaks by me. Drats!
I do have some special challenges: I’m mostly blind, I’m hard of hearing, I have arthritis in my spine, and some nerve damage in my right rear leg. But even though these challenges may be daunting to you humans, I just take them in stride, with a little help from my friends of course.
The special eye doctor said that I have cataracts and retinal degeneration, neither of which can be fixed with surgery. So, she gave me drops to keep me from getting glaucoma, and she said that if I take certain vitamins every day, it will slow the progression and may even improve my vision a little bit. We’ll have to wait and see, ‘cause I just started the vitamins a couple of weeks ago. I have learned where lots of stuff is in my foster mom’s home, so now I don’t crash into things as often as I used to. I still bump into things, but that just lets me know where I am. I can even go outside to go potty or roll in the grass and find my way back to the back porch without any help. My foster mom still guides me when she wants me to do something, like go to my room to eat my breakfast or dinner, but that just gets me there much quicker than if I navigate by myself.
Even though I’m hard of hearing, if you tell me to “sit” my butt hits the ground BAM – especially if you have a treat or my dinner!
About my arthritis and nerve damage. I get along just fine; though, my hind-end is a bit weak, but it does not keep me down. I take a pain pill in the morning and night and it helps me.
What I really, really want is for someone to love me just the way I am. And I will do the same for you. I’ve heard my foster mom say that I’m very easy to have around because I’m so well behaved. I just love to be petted and talked to and kissed. Who wouldn’t? I also really like it when I find my ball. I like to gather them up on my bed and sleep with them. Sometimes when I find one of my balls, I’ll walk around with it very proudly. It makes my foster mom smile – I can hear it in her voice or when she giggles at me.
One thing I do kind of struggle with are stairs. Because I’m mostly blind, they’re hard for me. My foster mom has two steps from the porch to the back yard. I use my nose to touch each step before I step down. Otherwise it feels like I’m stepping off the edge of the earth. So a one-story house would be best for me.