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Chumlee's thread - a Senior? Already?!

14857 Views 175 Replies 28 Participants Last post by  Sankari
We are snowbound today in the Northeast in the throes of Snowstorm Niko, expecting over a foot of snow so I promised myself that today is the day I will start Chumlee's own thread to record some of our journey together.

I can't believe how hard it is to bring myself to start a thread in the Senior (gulp!) forum! Ok, so Chumlee has been a Senior for at least couple years now. It's just that I prefer living in a state of denial and pretending he's only 6 or 7.....:eek:

On the other hand, I know how fortunate I am to have a nearly 12 year old golden! I've read so many heartbreaking stories here on GRF chronicling many young dogs taken much, much too soon.

So without further ado, here is the story of Chumlee.

The beginning of Chumlee's life is not 100% clear. Chumlee is a rescue dog and I have only the rescue group's account of his life up until 2011.

Chumlee was born in upstate New York. He had at least 2, possibly 3 families before he came to live with us. His first family had 2 young children and the story was that he was likely not socialized or exercised and that little landshark puppy Chumlee played too rough with the children. They surrendered him to a shelter when he was almost 2 years old.

He was neutered and adopted very briefly and returned to the shelter, then promptly adopted by another family with 3 young children. History repeated itself; Chumlee was too rough with the very young children. And somewhere along the line, probably because of poor socialization, he became dog-reactive. Rather than work with him, this family surrendered him to the same shelter after a couple of years, saying he was wild and unmanageable.

Enter Peppertree Rescue, who took him into rescue with the shelter's blessing. Finding a foster home with all of his dog-reactiveness wasn't easy and finding a forever home for him was even harder than that! Despite everything, Peppertree refused to give up on him. They found a trainer to work on manners and they discovered that he was quite an anxious guy but very smart and biddable! He stayed with them for nearly 7 months as they worked to earn his trust and help him become an adoptable pet.

In June 2011, we lost our 18 year old cat and then a mere 10 days later we had to put our nearly 16 year old dog down. To say that we were heartbroken seems a little inadequate. Suddenly we had no pets. At all. :crying: Our house was empty and just too quiet.

For a couple of months prior to losing our pets, I had been looking online at a picture of a handsome GR - he made me smile - but saw in big letters that he had to be the ONLY PET because of his reactiveness to other animals. I couldn't stop thinking about him but knew he wasn't the dog for us since we had a dog and a cat.

After losing our pets, I kept thinking about this adorable GR but I was sure he must have been adopted already. I finally contacted the rescue group to inquire about him. To my shock, he was still available!!

We adopted Chumlee in August 2011, driving 5 hours to bring him home with us without ever having met him in person. I just knew it was meant to be.

Chumlee will be 12 years old in May. We have officially had him longer than all of his other families combined! He has brought joy and silliness back to our house. Chumlee's favorite things are going for long walks and carrying my son's dirty athletic socks in his mouth after stealing them out of the laundry. He is also a skilled surgeon and has performed countless "squeaker-ectomies" from stuffed toys. His favorite "sneak foods" are Cheez-Its and pizzelle cookies, although, like most Goldens, he loves ALL food!

I will try to update this thread often and I know I will be asking for advice from other past and present parents of senior goldens. And I'm trying hard to get over my hang-up and fears over Chumlee getting older. :eek:

My new mantra:

"Know that you are the perfect age. Each year is precious and special for you shall only live it once. Be comfortable with growing older." by Louise Hay

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Oh goodness, I have a lump in my throat, I'm just so happy that Chumlee found his way into your family. He's always making me smile and reminds me so much of Barnaby with his silly antics!

Welcome to the Senior Forum gorgeous Chumlee, I will look forward to reading about all your adventures, Uncle Barnaby enjoys reading all your letters too so if you want to take sock stealing to the next level just let him know:wink2:!

I hope you have many happy, healthy years ahead, big hugs and cyber socks flying over x:smile2:
 

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Enjoy the snow Chumlee, I love your photo!.
 

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Oh Chumlee you are looking wonderful, what a great bed!. It seems you have an admirer, your brothers girlfriend sounds lovely. Of course I'm your number one fan in England though!. I hope you are still stealing those socks, maybe you should have hidden some in the snow.

Im so glad you're doing well, you really give me a huge smile. Hugs to you gorgeous boy and please say hi to your mum from me x
 

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Haha, the stuffing is the best part!. The selective hearing made me smile as I seem to remember a certain Mr B doing something very similar :wink2:

I hope you all have a great weekend together and thanks for the cyber socks Chum I received them earlier x:smile2:
 

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That's cute and clever, I think Chum has definitely been talking to Barnaby! :wink2:
 

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Hi Chum and Mum, hope you're having lots of fun!
 

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Wonderful update, I just love that he's now playing the Senior card!!. Big hugs flying over to you Chum and I hope you're still stealing those socks and make sure you keep your humans well and truly under your paw! xxx
 

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I'm laughing at the image of Chum and the porcupine!. I'm glad it turned out well, love that he's just so curious! Hugs and socks received, thanks Chum, I'm sending you a big hug and a cracker and cheese back! xxx
 

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Oh Chum, I'm so sorry that I missed your birthday, I think as you are a senior now you should have another one, so Happy Birthday Chumlee!!!!, plus you must receive extra treats and presents to celebrate as well. Love that you got your fix of ice rolling in, just shows what a perfectly "cool" dog you are, hugs, rubs and socks flying over to you x
 

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So glad Chumlee continues to keep everyone on their toes!, he maybe a senior now but it's good to hear that he's still got his stealing instincts. Glad you all enjoyed your summer with your son and his friends, the years really fly by don't they!.
 

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Killing stuffies eh Chum, you must be secretly communicating with Barnaby!.
 

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Chumlee is so lovely, and I'm very impressed that he's being kind to his stuffies!. I hope he starts to get used to the ramp, maybe some treats placed on it would entice him, however, Barnaby wouldn't use one either, my hubby ended up lifting him in with me the other side holding a treat!
 

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Chumlee is such a special boy, the Seniors are a very special gift.
I am really enjoying read his thread, I was able to get caught up on everything I've missed this morning......

This quote is priceless-
That quote is just perfect!
 

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I don't know what to say except just look at that face!!!!!
 

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That is so funny, he's so smart. I sometimes think that despite our goldens getting on in years there are times when you just know that there's still the naughty young pup in there and it's lovely to see. I'm so happy that Chumlee continues to do well, treasure each day with your gorgeous boy. P.S. please pass on a big hug and a cracker and cheese from me!
 

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Here's a picture of Chumlee doing some of his best work, trying to convince DH and I that we definitely, positively forgot to feed him for the last several weeks even though we marked it on our new chart. :rolleyes:

He takes up his position on the designated spot and begins the display. Note the soulful eyes and earnest expression...pretty convincing :)

Aw, that face! :--heart:
 

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Thanks Chum, I always appreciate socks! :love::You_Rock_:love:
 

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Precious Chum, love the photos, I can just imagine how pleased he was to have you back, bless him x
 

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Oh no, sorry to hear about the mishap with the skunk!. I laughed at Chum grabbing the ice cream cone, I remember a certain doggy doing something very similar!.
 

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I was just thinking about you all yesterday!. Great update, so glad to hear that Chumlee is keeping you all on your toes. Just love that boy for helping himself to the treats!.
 
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