Saturday, January 14, 2017

As expected, now the grieving begins.

In our little family we have all lost someone that we loved. Two days after the passing of Grandpa Axl there is the sound of quiet moaning drifting through the halls. Ruffin, now our oldest, has gone through this moment once before and his grieving for his beloved girl Sassy almost cost him his health. It was then, 4 short years ago, that I watched and listened to his almost constant moaning for 6 months that made me desperate to find a replacement female Rottie to keep him company. That search for an adult female proved futile and eventually led me to adopt a 7-week old puppy whom we named Bessie. And whom Ruffin thoroughly enjoyed raising by himself.

Now poor old Ruff has also lost his one-time best friend Axl who he practically grew up with since he was only 3 years old when we adopted the older Rottweiler. I enjoyed watching them chase each other around our large backyard always noting that 7-year old Axl could run like a deer and the young Ruff was never able to catch him. 

But their playful friendship gradually simmered down as Axl grew older and wasn't able to run around any more. At that point the friendship consisted of frequent face licks as Ruff seemed to be worried about Axl's declining health.

It was the presence of the new little girl that seemed to take Ruf's mind off of worrying about his best buddy so that turned out to be a good thing. Ruffin had a new love in his life and everything was right again.

And the contentious relationship that began when the feisty little fur-ball tried to get the old Rottweiler to play with her and ended with her being scooted across the hardwood floor from a well placed paw swipe, gradually progressed from Grumpy Grandpa to respected, old man Grandpa. So a different kind of love developed that crossed over a few generations.

But now the almost adult two and a half year old young lady Rott is beginning to experience her own sense of grief for the first time. I saw it begin when she began sniffing all the places where Axl used to lay down near his Mom. She was definitely looking for him, even licking the floor where he used to sleep. And at night I hear her soft mewing cries while she is sleeping on my bed. I know she is dreaming of those better days.

As for me, I cry to myself reading the sad comments that come in from people I've never met. And I realize that I had the privilege to have lived with a most special Rottweiler that has managed to affect the hearts of so many people around the world. But I also have the benefit of a vast collection of photos that retell all the good times. 

Click the images below for a larger view.


  1. Dear Nelson and Jacqueline,

    I am so sorry for your loss. I've been following your blog since 2010 and Axl was always this quiet but significant member of your family. He showed the best qualities of Rotties and he was loved by so many of us. I hope you feel better soon.

    My family lost our oldest Rottweiler last year. He served in local police force before came to our house and we all adored him very very much. It was truly painful to let him go.

    Please stay strong - I'm sure you do.


    1. Daisy,

      Thank you for the kind words and comfort. I will miss the old guy as much as Ruff and Bess do.