This wonderful tribute was posted by leightenheimer, over on Imgr and was too sweet to not share.

Grab a tissue!

 

One day we met in a factory and the rest was history.

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 A little over a year ago, my wife and I lost two children back-to back through miscarriage. At this point in our new marriage we had already dealt with so much and losing those potential lives served as a bottomless pit; a hole that seemed unlikely we would ever fill. I was working at a wood flooring factory a couple months after. I had an entire wing, basically, to myself. One day I was staining some custom furniture for my boss’s getaway Florida home when I looked at the other end of the hangar length building to see a little puppy. I instantly wanted to abandon post and grab the thing for cuddles but I had work to get done. This pup wasn’t having none of that though. He walked up to me and stared at me with his huge eyes. I pet him and noticed instantly that he was flea covered, matted and not in the best physical shape. As I looked closer I realized that he had a lot of gray around his muzzle, ears and face.

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I got him chicken-ish fast food during my lunch because he was so thin that I could feel his bones. I started sending these pictures to my wife planning on pleading to bring him home. I didn’t have to because she beat me to the punch.

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I thought that I would have to herd him away from doors all day until I could clock out and take him home. The little guy fell asleep on the floor and stayed there all day.

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I took him home and washed dozens upon dozens of fleas off his body. My wife and my daughter dried him off and brushed his fur. He looked a lot better but still seemed worse for wear. We are lucky he made it through that first night. After that night we named him Rooster Cogburn, after John Wayne’s role in True Grit. We found it fitting; due to his ability to keep moving despite it all.

When we took him to our veterinarian the whole clinic fell for him instantly. The vet had a hard time identifying his breed because of his size. They landed on Shetland Sheepdog, an age of somewhere between 8 and 12 with a weigh-in of 7.3 lbs.

His impressive list of existing conditions were:

1. Stunted growth from malnutrition.
2. Cataracts and one small pupil from blunt force trauma to the head.
3. Ulcers in his stomach causing vomiting.
4. Four oronasal fistulas in his mouth caused by his teeth rotting out of his head.
5. Completely deaf.

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After a surgery on the fistulas, a strict medicinal regiment, months of spoiling and a family who loved him as much as two children and then some; Toothless (Nickname added by our Five year old daughter because of her love for How To Train Your Dragon) Rooster Cogburn was a dashing elderly gentleman in the vein of Sir Ian Mckellen and Christopher Plummer. I now present to you a photo journey through the good times;

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He would gum my boots, dominate my foot or donkey kick my heels if I tried to leave the house. He also made a very gruff *Harumph* noise when frustrated.

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He loved being spoon fed by his mommy, greek yogurt was his favorite treat. He would snuggle up into our necks when he wanted to tell us he loved us.

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Here he was getting in touch with his timber wolf roots. We had watched The Grey together that same day.

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Here he was given a Normal-Type item to boost his SP. ATK.

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The cutest Who in Whoville.

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He had had enough of that.

The Gambler. He loved sitting on playing cards or in the middle of a game.

The Gambler. He loved sitting on playing cards or in the middle of a game.

Most of all...he loved naps. He had a nest (the red blanket) and a mistress (the brown blanket). Such sleep.

Most of all…he loved naps. He had a nest (the red blanket) and a mistress (the brown blanket). Such sleep.

He would sleep next to us on the floor for his Second Breakfast nap.

He would sleep next to us on the floor for his Second Breakfast nap.

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Here he practices his Lucille Bluth wink.

Toothless Rooster Cogburn was given three months to one year to live. He made it to one year before he got too sick to grace us with his awesomeness for one more day. Today, June 2, 2014; I watched the greatest friend, most loving pet and the most heroic fighter I’ve ever met sink into a well deserved final nap while his mother and I held his paws. I never thought I could love a pet as much as I loved him; as much as we loved him. Everyone who met him instantly loved him. His vets, our friends, a theater full of patrons when he performed a walk-on role in a play. He truly was one of a kind. We hope that we gave him enough good memories to wipe out any bad ones that came before.

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“Rooster” “Toothless Rooster Cogburn” “King Booster” “Wuuf” “Boosta Boy”

We love you and always will. Enjoy that nap…you definitely! deserve it.

This is Chance in front with his two sisters, Abby and Halo. Chance is a rescue who unfortunately bounced from a home to a shelter 3 times before I rescued him. He is a wonderful boy and fit in with is sisters very nicely. I can only figure out 1 way that Chance bounced around from home to home so much; he is vocal. Let’s remind people not to obtain a Sheltie unless they understand that Shelties are active, interactive and vocal dogs. Chance is much less vocal now that he is secure. I just want to tell the world how much I love him.

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What a little cutie, Terry!

Hugs for giving him a great home!

WaltLook at this sweet little face! This little cutie was picked up as a stray on the Florida west coast. The rescue is guessing he is 9-12 years old. He loves people, loves to run, play ball, go for walks, lay at your feet or cuddle in your lap. His teeth were a mess, but they have now been cleaned and pulled…13 were lost, but otherwise he is a happy and healthy guy.

He is just such a doll, just a little guy that needs a home to spend his “golden” years. Do you have room in your heart and your home? Walt just wants to love you and be loved!

All the rescue asks for is an application, vet reference and a donation to help defer the cost to care for these Shelties that have been so neglected. Please contact at Barbara Davis for more information on Walt or visit Mid-Florida Sheltie Rescue to fill out an application and see other Shelties that are looking for homes.

UPDATE: Walt has been adopted!

BuddyChipmunkThis is Buddy. We call him Buddy Bear. He was raised outdoors his entire life and had not seen the inside of a house until rescued by Second Chance Sheltie Rescue of St. Louis (SCSR). Buddy has fallen in love with his Chipmunk and it’s rare that the two are separated. This gentle giant is 100% love, tail wags and Sheltie kisses. It has been my extreme pleasure to foster Buddy and introduce him to the luxury of old quilts and a soft toy. I am confident he will find his forever family soon. In the meantime, he and Chipmunk sit and wait patiently.

Hugs to you Christine for fostering this sweet boy!

If you would like to learn more about Buddy and fill out an adoption application, please visit Buddy’s page at Second Chance Sheltie Rescue of St. Louis.

shebarescueSheba came into rescue a couple of months ago, unable to really stand on her own and walk any distance. She was overweight with very bad hip dysplasia. Well, thanks to her foster parents, Sheba is doing wonderfully! She has lost 5 lbs. and had alternative therapies including laser, acupuncture and hydrotherapy. She can now getting up on her own and walking around all the time. She still needs help with stairs, but she has improved so much! We are so pleased with her achievements!

Sheba is a truly wonderful sweet dog. She is friendly with the other dogs she lives with and great with everyone she meets. She is just such a happy girl who holds no ill will for being neglected.

Sadly the rescue has not had one inquiry for adoption for this girl. Please share her. She is a beautiful color headed white sheltie who will definitely not disappoint her new family. She has so much love to give!

Contact Julie at: [email protected] if interested in adopting this sweetie who deserves a loving home!

UPDATE 1/25/14: Sheba has been adopted!

sammyPoor Sammy, he really needs an angel! Sammy was one of the hoarder dogs who went with three others to Houston Texas Sheltie Rescue who had helped out with the hoarder dogs in the past. Unfortunately, the rescue had to close down and Sammy was still without a home. Tri-State immediately said they wanted him back in NY.

When Sammy came back, he was, sadly, not doing well. He lost a lot of weight and you could tell he just was not happy. After spending time at the vet and a battery of tests including blood work, ultrasound and urines, it was discovered that Sammy’s liver is failing, he is borderline anemic and has absolutely no protein in his urine (which is a bad thing -there should be some).

Sammy is also so emotionally drained. This dog has lived approximately, 10 years in the hoarder house with no utilities or water or connection with the outside world. The rescue trekked him halfway across the country in the hopes of finding his happily ever after only to have to come all the way back and still no family to love him.

While Sammy has not shown any aggression in his foster home, he has not dealt well with the poking and prodding at the vets office. He needs a quiet place to hang his little Sheltie hat, be fed wonderful nutritious food, be given his meds and supplements and have peace and love for the remainder of his life however long or short it is. The veterinarian has said he could realistically still have a couple of years with good support.

Because of all this sweet boy has been through and his medical needs, the rescue just wants him to have a family to love and honor him. They are looking for a forever foster home to care for Sammy. They want someone to open their home for him, but he will remain in the custody of TSSSR – meaning they will pay his bills for the remainder of his life.

Sammy’s ideal home would have no more than 1-3 dogs, be a quiet envirornment with no young children running in and out (visiting kids ok – Sammy can be crated or kept in a bedroom) and a fenced in yard. Sammy is a tiny boy – only 14lbs. 

He really deserves at least a little time knowing the love of a family before he leaves this world!

Please contact Julie at [email protected] if you would like to offer this boy a temporary or forever foster home. Sammy must remain in the immediate tri-state area.

UPDATE 9/25/13: Sammy has been adopted!

Daisy is a 2-year-old tri-color spayed female Sheltie. She spent a lot of her life so far living in a crate, but is blossoming now that she is in a foster home. Playing ball is her favorite thing; and her favorite ball is a soft, silly-looking stuffed tomato. She’ll chase it, catch it and throw it back at you for hours!

Please contact Northern California Sheltie Rescue to fill out an application for this sweet girl!

UPDATE 9/1/13: Daisy has now been adopted! :))