Each animal, like humans, have special traits. I took Max about everywhere with me. When I took Max on walks he would take the leash from me and hold it in his mouth while walking. People jogging would stop and notice him carrying the leash. I never taught Max to do carry it, it was just his thing. When we came to a drinking fountain, he would stand on his hind legs, put his front ones on the drinking fountain, while I pressed the button. He didn’t touch the mouthpiece for the drinking fountain, just drink the water as it flowed, same as a human. Back home, I have a side door to my house. I’d leave it ajar so Max could push it open when ready to come in the house. I would tell him to close the door and he would push it closed with his paw. Max was great!

I noticed Max was having problems with his hind legs. They weren’t steady and would often give out on him. I tried several veterinarians. One thought it was a problem with his hips, another wanted to try acupuncture. When Max was diagnosed cancer, I brought him to Gulf Coast Veterinary Oncology for chemo. He lived nine more months, but a dog that had the diagnosis at the same time died a month later because he didn’t receive treatment. I’m grateful for those nine months.

After Max passed, I was so broken hearted that I got Tobi, from a rescue group a month later. It’s been said that everything happens for a reason, in October of 2013, I had quadruple bypass surgery. After the surgery I wasn’t able to lift weights; therefore, I would have been unable to lift Max in my truck to take him to the Gulf Coast. But Tobi… he can jump into the truck and I don’t have to lift him for taking him to the park and wherever else we need to go.