I had Nancy Pinke do another painting for John. This time for Valentine’s Day. This one was a bit tough because I didn’t have a whole lot of pictures and the ones I had were not very good because we didn’t have a digital camera for much of the time we had Ruthie. Nancy, did a great job and really captured Ruthie’s expression in the painting. I called it “dim”, but she was not a dumb dog at all. She just did not have a “bright” look about her. In her defense, she was almost 17 years old!
Ruthie has a somewhat interesting story, in that she is one of the few dogs that came into rescue for what I considered to be a pretty legit reason and her owner did what people who surrender their dogs, while crying always say they are going to do, but *never* do. She kept in touch with us to see how Ruthie was doing.
Ruthie was turned in to rescue at the age of 11 because her owner was going to Siberia to be a missionary. This is clearly not something that a Papillon would survive doing and it wasn’t a case of her not matching the furniture or a new baby coming or the dog just being too old now. Her owner really wanted her to be stable in her last few years because she had been leaving her with people for periods of time while she was doing missionary work and now she was going to do this long-term time in Siberia.
Ruthie fell in love with John at first site. I think it actually hurt her owners feelings a little bit because once she saw John she never even looked back at the owner. She was ready to go with him and that was that. We didn’t even bother trying to place her, given her advanced age and the fact that she thought the sun rose and set over John. Her prior owner wanted to keep in contact and that worked out for her as well. She and John did communicate up until Ruthie’s death and John took Ruthie to visit her at least once when she was back in the area to visit family a few years after we adopted her.
Ruthie did not care for me very much. She did not dislike me. I just wasn’t John. If you were not John she did not care for you. If you talked to her and you were not John, she had no time for you. She would look at him like “it’s talking to me again..can’t you make it stop that?” She would actually turn her head when I talked to her. I did not take it personally. I understood, I was not John
She would tell him when it was time to go to bed. If he was late, she would stand in the hallway and bark at him to let him know it was past his bedtime! She would continue to bark until he went to bed. Weekends included, usually. I’m not really certain how she determined what time his bedtime was, but I’m pretty sure it coincided with *her* bedtime
Ruthie was our first Papillon to cross the Rainbow Bridge in 2006. She was there to meet Zach, Otter and now Cajun. We didn’t meet her until she was 11 years old, but she was a good dog and we loved her and we still miss her.