On Friday 16th December, Lorna wrote to us with the news we all dread hearing. She told us “My heart is broken
into tiny pieces. Merlin has gone. He just had nothing left and saying goodbye was all I had left to do for him. I'm
so sorry to bring bad news but he had done so well to get to the age he had and I couldn't see him suffer”.

Unsurprisingly, Lorna is feeling very sad and tearful and on the verge of falling apart but Andy, who, with his Mum
Val, was Merlin’s original fosterer and who is always extremely kind and willing to do anything to help, has offered
to help by going to fetch Merlin's ashes for her.

Merlin must have been about 16yrs which is absolutely amazing by any standards but especially for a dog who
had needed a lump removed when he first came into IRR care. It is a testament to the devotion Lorna and
her daughter Rachel gave him and for the love they shared for 9yrs.

On the fateful day, Lorna instinctively knew something wasn't right in the morning when Merlin wouldn't eat
his breakfast - always such a bad sign for any Goldie. He did have a drink and even went out for a little
amble up the road and back as usual then spent some time in the garden but, later in the day, he just lay in
one place and simply couldn't move.

Lorna hoped he would be able to move after a rest but Merlin remained there all day. It seemed he had lost
the feeling at his back end. She called the vets to come out as she didn't want to take him in the car, something
which he was still always anxious and stressed about.

Lorna said “They came in the evening after surgery and it was obvious to us all that all I could do was let him
go. I'd sat with him and made lots of fuss of him for a long time before the vet arrived and he hardly acknowledged
the fact that I was there so he had given up, I think.

He left this world with the dignity he always had. He was gracious and seemingly thankful for the last act of kindness
and although my heart is broken yet again, I know he had to go.

He was a true Goldie from the insatiable appetite for food and life to his obstinate, stubborn pig headedness,
especially in old age.

He was truly a beautiful spirit and, although very different to Zena, he was equally mine. He was with me for
9 years and he got me through some very bad times during that period. He was something I hadn't expected
to find twice in a lifetime and that was another soulmate, just as my darling Zena had been. You can't get any
luckier than that”. 


MERLIN (was Perry)


PERRY was a stray who was never claimed so he was very confused and sad. The reason, no doubt, that he was dis-owned was because of the possible expense involved in treating the lump on his shoulder. We had this removed at the same time as he was castrated and he was given the "all clear".
Perry (now Merlin) got on well with Sandie's dogs in Ireland and seemed to be a pretty laid back sort of fellow. We estimated that he was about 7yrs old and, generally, in good health.

MY BIG DAY 27.10.2013

Merlin says " Mum put this on Dog Pages for me as it was my big day and I have now been here for six whole years – can you believe it? Time really does fly doesn’t it?

Mum was thinking about that day and she thought it would be nice to mark it, even though it made her cry again thinking about our darling Zena and how much we all miss her every day. There have been other dogs since of course (six at the last count!), and we loved them all dearly, but Zena was a very special girl. Ma says that I am her very special-est boy, but then she only has one and that’s me, so I think she is trying to pull the hairy stuff over my eyes with that one!

As you will see from my thread, I have turned into a right obstinate old git and I do love to play on it. It takes SUCH a long time to go for a walk these days as I have my head in the hedgerows or sniffing in the long grass and no amount of coaxing will get me moving until I’m good and ready!  Mum says that Judy (who is 21 in December) is easier to walk than me.

 I don’t understand why we have to be in such a hurry. I mean what harm does a bit of torrential rain do anyone? Mum says it is no good for my arthritis or her temper but what does she know? We all have lovely big waterproof coats so I don’t see the problem.  

These humans don’t appreciate a really nasty smell or last night’s chips strewn in the grass the way we do either and, anyway, I can still move pretty quickly if I see a cat or a squirrel and that’s what matters surely?"

 Merlin's special friend Judy has gone to Rainbow Bridge. She was 21yrs this month which is a fantastic age. Unfortunately, even though she had had a good long life, that doesn’t make it any easier for those she has left behind and it is hard to think about happy things, like Christmas, when something like this happens.

Perry only came to us on Saturday morning so this is just an initial assessment.
Firstly he's a big old handsome Goldie, both tall and broad. I think he's been someone's pet at some time as he walks like a dream on the lead, and is perfectly housetrained.
As you'll see from the pictures, poor Perry's been in the wars, he had a lump removed from his back last week, and was neutered at the same time. Add to that his yukky ears, and you have one poorly soldier. Fortunately his lump was nothing sinister, so he should soon be on top form again.

Poor Perry's been through a lot over the past few days, and while really a big soft fusspot, right now he's a little grumpy, and for that reason, for now at least, I'd have to reccommend he didn't go anywhere with young children. I'd expect this reccommendation to change as he gets used to his new environment, and starts to feel better.
He's a lovely big dog, and with some grooming will be one impressive Goldie.
Perry had a pocket of fluid develop by the stitches on his back. To be safe, he went to the vets this morning to be checked out. The vet was able to drain most of it out, and said it was nothing to be concerned about. He was given an antibiotic jab, as a precaution, and some tablets to make him wee more, which will apparently help..............although it'll do nothing for the garden:))))))

If it does build up again, he willl have to have a local anaesthetic and a drain put in.
In a waiting room full of dogs, and when the vet was putting needles in to drain the liquid, he never so much as grumbled.

 Could you be the one to put the smile back on poor Perry's face again???????????

Perry (now Merlin) has gone to live with Lorna and Rachel and our very own Zena, who has been feeling a bit lonely since the loss of her beloved Ben.
Andy and Val both took him to his new home to see him settled and to have a cuddle with the beautiful Zena, of course!!!!  The dogs had previously met and got on well.
Lorna, their mum, says "Both dogs are getting lots of fuss and had a settled night.  We have had four walks since he arrived.  Zena is a bit slower of course, so I have to make Perry wait, and he is getting very good at it now.  We have renamed him Merlin in honour of Andy, who liked the name and with his arrival being so close to Halloween."
"Thought you may like to see a couple of photos taken by just a few minutes ago – there were treats involved of course, but I make no apology for the gross bribery that was going on in the name of art!!!!"


Lorna says: He is a perfect darling.  He has really settled in well and loves to follow us around.  If we are in different rooms, he tries to keep a paw in each room just to make sure that he knows what we are up to. He has settled with the cats now that they are confident with him and although he would love to chase them outside, they don’t give him much of a chance.  He is listening to me when we are out and it has saved us a barking match with other dogs more than once since I got him to come and sit in front of me at odd times whilst we are out.  I can put this into operation if another dog approaches.
Zena has slowed down quite a lot and I remarked on it to Rachel this afternoon.  That was when we realised that she is a year older than when we adopted her as we had her come to live with us last January. She is still really keen to go out, but after the initial excitement she does slow to a plod.  On days when she can’t manage much, I take Merlin for a longer walk on his own.  He can get quite bouncy when we are out, so this helps him to get rid of some of his extra energy.

ZENA and MERLIN still waiting for Santa

28 OCTOBER 2012

Today is my special day. Yes it is five years since I came to live with mum and Rachel and Zena! Can you believe it? I can hardly remember the time when I was in a sad and lonely place when IRR rescued me and paid for my operation and Andy and Val cared for me until I was able to come and live in this mad place I call home. Crazy isn’t it?

Mum was just reminding me about all the other dogs that I have shared my life and home with since coming here and how well I have done to survive them all. There was Zena who was here when I arrived and who had lost her friend Ben, then there was 21 year old Della, who Andy very kindly helped mum to fetch from her rescue foster carer in Shrewsbury. Then came Kya who at the age of 14 seemed a lot younger but got bloat after just 9 months and had to go to Rainbow Bridge; then Misty and Storm, who mum and Rachel fostered from Greece until their forever home came along and now, I am living with Judy 19 and Daisy 6, who came to live here on 1 September after their mum died and they had nowhere to go. A lady that mum got to know when she fostered Misty and Storm asked if she would take Judy and Daisy as the Bearded Collie rescue knew that at 19 and with dementia, Judy wouldn’t find another home – well you know mum – can’t turn away an oldie in need, so now I have two new sisters!

Amazing the things that can happen in five years isn’t it! Mum keeps telling me that she is constantly hoping that one day she will get another goldie like me, Zena and Ben, but just when she thinks she will, another needy dog turns up somewhere else and she adopts them instead. I’m sure one day she will have another beloved goldie though, aren’t you?

I am sending you a recent photo so you can see what a handsome old thing I have become.

love Merlin xxxx


�2017 Irish Retriever Rescue