I have told this story many times, but like any good tale, it’s worth repeating.
In early October 2004, we wrapped production on a movie in New York City. For the duration of this film (both in LA and NYC) we got a chance to work closely with a favorite actress of mine; who happened to have a small dog of her own. Watching her bring her pup to set and how she included her pampered pooch in everything, really inspired me. Her dog didn’t appear to be a burden or hinderance to her or her lifestyle. The actress even offered many words of encouragement during the shoot and our one-on-one interactions for which I’m forever grateful.
My partner and I had be in consideration of getting a dog since May 2003; we always knew we wanted a dachshund, but it was just a matter of when. After being home for a few weeks, we decided it was time. It was a Saturday morning, Oct. 30, 2004. We were reading the newspaper (back then when one still read a newspaper) and we noticed an ad from breeders that they had some doxie puppies available. This was before I knew anything about anything. We ended up taking a drive, about an hour from our home, to see what we could find.
When we arrived at the home of the breeders, they introduced us to two very fine, good looking red dachshund puppies. They looked very regal, though one seemed shy and the other pooped (luckily not on us, just near us). Not necessarily a great introduction. Then following behind a young boy, all on his own steam, came marching in another dachshund puppy. The other two were carried in, but not this one, he walked in all by himself, head held high and proud. He was 10 weeks old and the breeders said he was a little Napoleon. He came right up to us, greeted us with licks, tail wags and butt wiggling uncontrollably. AND after he took stock in us, he then walked around the room to see what else was there. This dachshund was confident and fearless. This was going to be our dachshund.
On the way home, the dachshund rode in my lap the entire time, and I strongly believe that in that hour drive home, we were bonded. We called this dachshund Napoleon for a day, but quickly decided to changed it to Rufus, which means red-haired.
Twelve years ago today, we got Rufus and my life literally changed its course forever. It has been a life-affirming, eye-opening journey with my little man. He has taught me so much about myself and the world around us. I have a long laundry list of things I have learned from Rufus, like being a better person with greater compassion and empathy for others, but above all, I have experienced a kind of joy and love that is truly priceless. Dogs are excellent teachers, I believe, and a good source of food for the mind and soul. I’m bonded with all of my hounds (Emily and Lily) but Rufus is my first dog as an adult, and will forever be extraordinarily special to me and all of those that know us.
Happy Got-you Anniversary Rufus!!! It has been a brilliant 12 years together, and I hope we have many more. Thanks friends for reading and sharing our special day with us. We love you guys.