Every morning before I started working I would pull up the rescue website to see if he was still there. I was waiting for someone to help him. I was waiting for someone to care. You see, I wasn’t looking for a dog for myself but a companion for my Grandmother. I already had The Colonel (the Pug) and Duo (the cat). I didn’t need another fur-baby, especially one with special needs.

One day turned into one week, one week turned into two; Apollo’s picture remained. I found myself walking around the house asking The Colonel ‘Why can’t anyone see that the blind pug needs love, too?’ The Colonel would just raise his brow, cock his head and nudge my leg. By the end of week two the nudging started making sense. While I was waiting for someone else, Apollo was waiting for me.

A few emails, an application, a few phone calls and the help of a sweet lady later Apollo was being delivered into my arms. Blind as a bat and with enough courage to face a lion Apollo mastered the house, the backyard, the back stairs and the art of chasing a cat without running into a wall. Apollo also mastered teaching. Besides teaching The Colonel how to sniff out fallen apples and how to make a bed of leaves he taught us patience, understanding and how to keep on living, even in the face of death.

Apollo knew something we didn’t. His kidneys were failing. Within months of arriving at my home he started losing weight and his breath started to smell rotten. The vet diagnosed him with chronic kidney failure, a disease he was probably born with, caused by poor breeding standards and the likely cause of his blindness. We were also advised that kidney disease had no cure, only treatment and a special diet. Something he should have been receiving from the day he was born. The vet asked me how he came to my home. Through my tears I told her as much of Apollo’s story as I knew. With a hug and a referral to an emergency vet hospital the vet advised me that Apollo had come home to die.

Within weeks Apollo was gone. After a long day of lying in the sun with The Colonel by his side we settled in on the couch to watch our evening shows. Shortly after I placed him on my lap and wrapped him in his favorite blanket he took his last breath in my arms.

According to Greek Mythology Apollo (the god) drove the fiery chariot that was the sun across the sky each day. I would say the same thing was true of Apollo (the Pug). He was, and his memory still remains, a brightly shining light in my family’s ordinary lives.

-Written by Victoria B.

August 16, 2010

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