Introducing Tessie


Well, it has been just over a year since I last posted here, and in fact, this week marked the one year anniversary of our adoption of Tessie from Atlantic Region Central Border Collie Rescue in Richmond, Virginia.  Here’s a link to their organization: 

We took some time to mourn the loss of our girls – after Gracie’s year-long battle with renal failure, we committed ourselves to enjoying what was left of our time with Sofie the Chow Mix.  Eventually, you realize that the company of a dog is essential to your well-being.  Once we realized we had come to that point, we knew it was time.

And it’s hard to believe our pack has been together a year already.  Tessie is a great dog, a hug bag.  Gracie was a border collie, of course, but Tessie is proof that even though the genetic material is pretty much the same, what you end up with can vary widely.

Gracie was driven by the natural working instinct of the breed,  so that she was always there with a ball to play fetch.  And Sofie, our loving chow mix – she was motivated by pure canine-ness, very protective and watchful, but very much a companion dog.   It’s funny to think how Tessie has personality traits that combine both of these – but in a way that make her her own dog. 

Tessie came from a difficult environment, we suspect maybe even an abusive situation at a puppy mill in southwest Virginia.  But I was pleasantly surprised when I went outside yesterday, in the morning, after I let Tessie out into the backyard first thing.  When I got to where I could see her down in the yard, she had grabbed a stick and tossed it into the air…that’s new behavior.  Tessie is finally coming into her own, settling in with us, so that now she’s inventing games.  It’s a heartwarming thought.

If you’re thinking of getting a dog, Mary and I encourage you to think rescue first.  In the US and other countries, there are plenty of breed specific organizations like ARCBCR; there are others like Lost Dog and Cat Rescue (; or maybe best of all, you can find a good, worthy dog at your local shelter.


6 Responses to Introducing Tessie

  1. Sarah says:

    I thought you might be interested in Chloe Elizabeth’s page on facebook.

    She’s fighting a congenital disorder and the more likes we have the more we hope to find her a donor–her only chance at life. You don’t have to be an animal person to know the pain of watching an innocent young life suffer as well as the toll on the family and friends. Please take a moment to check out the page and if you’d be so kind as to like it and spread the word, it would mean a lot and could potentially save her life (as well as all those around her and other puppies to come).

    This is my puppy but this raises awareness and support for research and better treatments.

  2. Martha says:

    We are enduring renal failure of our 17 year old border collie Mallory. Thank you for your blog. It has been a lifeline towards helping us cope. We have made the difficult decision to end Mallory’s suffering today.

  3. Mary and I are sorry to hear of your loss. What a long and wonderful life for Mallory. I’m glad our experience helped you, Martha.

  4. Robin Lin says:

    Thank you for your blog.. I am sitting next to my old little doggie girl who has CFR. Just by looking at her, it very hard and sad for us to take her in for the final injection tomorrow…. I am crying right now. Zantac is her name, we adopted her back in July, 2007. Vet said that she was about 2-3 years old back then. Zantac has been fighting this disease for 5 years. Now, she is so weak, and she doesn’t want to drink water or eat renal food.. Her human dad will take tomorrow off from work, and I will prepare her the last good meal tomorrow before the procedure. I just can not stop crying at this point…

    • Mary and I are very sorry for your loss. It’s a very hard thing to be in that moment of making decisions. Look at all the good times that you’ve had together and that’s what will get you through. And those are the memories you’ll keep, too.

  5. Sara says:

    Dear Jim & Mary, just wanted to say thanks for writing your blog about Gracie. All that she was and all that you went through as a family. My 15 year old BC Mavis has just been diagnosed and I’m trying to educate myself about the road ahead. Your experiences, love of Gracie, and positivity have been very helpful.

    And well done on Tessie – she looks smashing!

    All the best,

    Sara (London,UK)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: