Uller

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On Saturday, we had to have our beautiful dog, Uller, put down. We had had her for nearly 16 years, a pretty good run, but her health was deteriorating and it got to the stage where she didn’t seem to be getting any joy from life. Of course, we had hoped that she would just die peacefully in her sleep, but she was a stubborn old girl to the very end.

Refusing to turn around to have her photo taken. Did we mention stubborn?

Refusing to turn around to have her photo taken. Did we mention stubborn?

She has been a huge part of our life and we are going to miss her terribly, but we have been having fun over the last couple of days digging out old photos of her & reminiscing, so we thought we would share with you too. This post might be a bit long but we’ll try not to make it too sentimental.

Cue gratuitous sentimental photo.

Cue gratuitous sentimental photo.

We got Uller from a rescue centre in South Australia in 1997. She was a cross between a Bull Terrier and a Red Heeler and apparently that combination put a lot of people off – we were told (after we had signed all the paperwork to take her) that she was down to be euthanised the following week as the centre could only keep each dog for a few weeks if they didn’t find a home. I can understand people being put off – I mean, she does look pretty scary doesn’t she?

Grrrr

Grrrr

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

She was pretty aloof, which was one of the reasons we picked her at the rescue centre. All the other puppies were jumping up and down in their kennels yapping ‘Pick me, pick me, PICK ME!!!!’. And while they were all very cute, we fell for the puppy in a kennel on her own (most of the others were in litters), lying on her bed and watching everyone go past. She wagged her tail when we crouched down at her kennel, but even when she was let out for us to have a play with her, she wandered off and did her own thing. Maybe that is why other people didn’t choose her, but for us it was love at first sight.

Checking out the new digs a few months later. She was going to be a dog who slept in her kennel at night. It didn't last.

Checking out the new digs a few months later. She was going to be a dog who slept in her kennel at night. It didn’t last.

As well as being stubborn, she was also pretty smart which made for an interesting combination when it came to ‘obedience’. She liked to have a good think about why we were telling her to do whatever it was we wanted her to do – if she couldn’t think of a good reason for it, she probably wouldn’t do it. Or maybe would do it, if she was in a good mood, just to humour us. She was tough and would take on anything, but was also terrified of storms & fireworks which led to more than one ‘running away from home’ episode – fortunately (and thanks to her collar tag) someone always found her and gave us a call.

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She loved travelling which is just as well – she lived with us in Australia & the UK and then travelled around Europe for 18 months before her final move to Portugal.

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In Sweden

In Sweden

In France

In France

On the ferry on the way to Portugal - whoa, why is the ground moving?

On the ferry on the way to Portugal – whoa, why is the ground moving?

She loved playing with sticks….

The bigger the better

The bigger the better

…and of course loved the beach…

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She wasn’t too sure about snow when she first encountered it, but soon got the hang of it…

WTF?

WTF?

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Snow & stick? Doggy heaven!

Snow & stick? Doggy heaven!

She loved going on adventures….

We called it camping - she called it being squashed in the car

We called it camping – she called it being squashed in the car

Landyachting

Landyachting

Kayaking

Kayaking

She loved sunbathing….

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She loved bones….

The bigger the better

The bigger the better

She could be a bit aloof with people, but was pretty good with my nephew & niece (how did we not get a photo of her with my niece?)….

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It feels very quiet without her around. Although she spent most of her time sleeping recently, there was always something to remind us that she was there – her Darth Vader snoring, the chink of her collar tag on the floor, the waft of a doggy fart. She was brilliant and we feel honoured that she allowed us to be her people and tag along on all her adventures over the last 16 years. We feel pretty certain that is how she would view it.

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Her last photo. She also loved sleeping.

Her last photo. She also loved sleeping.

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7 responses »

  1. She was a fabulous dog. Looking at the photos she also had a wonderful life with the two of you. My heart aches for your sorrow however she has enriched your lives so much that you wouldn’t be the same without having had her and her you. Thank you for sharing these photos and stories, it was beautiful. All our love sent your way, Nat, Rob, and the girls xx

  2. Hello Sarah and David, You must been very sad to miss your dog who was with you for so many years, but be sure he had a lovely time with you and you where the lovelyest owners I could think of. We thank you so much for your hospitalety, we found the spot where you live beautifull and quiet, we love that. We are back since vriday but saterday I had a little exident with my hip but now it is much better. That’s why I am so late with this email. Here the spring begins also and our garden needs a lot of attention, the grass is 30 cm high and Ferry is bussy already for three days and still not ready. Greatings from Anna and Ferry ps Uller is looking at you from the dogheaven (thats what my mother always said in this circomstances)

  3. I’m so sorry for your loss! I just lost my Weimaraner from a snake bite and it’s sooo sad. I also have a 15-year old Kelpie X who lived with me in Europe and she sounds similar to Uller. You know you gave him a great live and you’ll miss him. You have fantastic memories and he’ll be waiting for you at the Rainbox Bridge.

  4. What a lovely tribute to a very loyal and faithful doggy – we know you will be missing her terribly but thankyou for sharing those lovely photos and memories. We will miss seeing her again. Our love to you both from us both. XX

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