Of the various people who know me, I doubt very many met Murphy. Which is a shame. Murphy passed away today, after spending nearly 14 years with our family. Murphy is special for many reasons. He was our family’s first dog. He was such a nice dog, especially in his senior years. But I like to think about how he came to be a part of the family.

One day when I was in middle school, my mother walked me in to the building. As she left she was talking to another individual. They noticed as they were walking away that a puppy was trying to get in the front door of the school. The security guards were doing their best to keep him out, so the puppy started to follow my mother and this other person as they walked to their cars. They joked about it.

When the sidewalk reached a “T,” they each went in a different direction toward their respective cars. The puppy followed my mother! Not only did it follow her, but when she got in the car, the puppy jumped up and put its front feet on the car. He was trying to look in at her through the window, and left two little dusty paw prints on the door. She drove away and left the dog there at the school. She did not want a dog. But the little paw prints were just too much. In spite of her better judgement, my mother drove to the veterinarian where I was volunteering, and asked how much it would cost to bring the dog in for a check-up and shots. Then she went back to the school, found the dog, and took him home.

We named him Murphy, and the rest, as they say, is history. A true Heinz 57, he had shepherd markings, tipped ears, the stocky body of a pit bull, a black-and-red tongue (we called it his “dirty” tongue) indicating chow-chow heritage, and wise eyes. He was such a unique dog. I liked to tell him that he had a “receding hairline”: when he was young, black markings spanned the top of his head, but the black disappeared as he aged until it was only two small spots in front of his ears. His mangy tipped ears eventually became Yoda ears, but we loved him just the same. He will be missed.


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One Response to “Eulogizing Murphy”  

  1. 1 Adam Pitel

    I’m sorry to hear of your lost. It sounds as though he was destined to be with your family. Knowing your family, I’m certain he had a happy and fulfilled dog’s life.

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