This is the story of Chauncey, Windsong Tabor Drums On Water, John and Sue Woodliff’s eight month old Curly-Coated Retriever pup (born 06/27/2008) and Linus, the year and a half year old Heeler/Mutt mix that Chauncey has befriended.
On a warm sunny day in May, 2008, Linus was enjoying the sunshine while watching his owner, John’s son, Jeremy, doing yard work - of the gardening type. To keep him out of harm’s way, Jeremy had put Linus on a 30 foot line, staked in an area of the yard that was not being worked. Unfortunately, Sneaky Cat was teasing Linus while Jeremy worked. Linus took off after the streaking, Sneaky Cat, and when he hit the end of his 30' line, he flipped into the air and landed on his back, suffering severe spinal cord damage. Linus was about a year old at the time.
Although the choices were grim, John, Sue, & Jeremy opted to give Linus a chance and put him into some pricey new wheels, which gave him mobility, while allowing him to use his rear legs when possible. Linus can take a few steps but primarily uses his wheels to be mobile.
Enter "Wheels", as John affectionately calls him, into Chauncey’s story. Wheels recently came to stay with Chauncey when Jeremy had to relocate with his construction job on a temporary, yet long-term assignment.
So how does an eight month old Curly pup get along with a much smaller invalid? By making him forget that he is handicapped. Together the boys "run" and play on a daily basis. A favorite of both boys is a good game of "Stick".(photos enclosed) . The tug of war that ensues is usually won by Chauncey, but Linus doesn’t give up. Not even a blizzard can stop the games.
According to John, Chauncey plays and runs with Linus, letting him have the upper "leg" at times. They get along exceptionlly well, and Chauncey never leaves Linus behind. He actually watches out for him, letting him catch up, though Chauncey can run cirles around him. They eat, sleep, play, romp, and get into trouble together. Chauncey has given Linus companionship and encouragement to get up and get moving.
Jeremy thinks Chauncey is a very good companion for Linus, and having him around has given Linus more energy and someone to enjoy life with. We are encouraged that Linus has a better quality of life with his "wheels" and Chauncey to give him a reason to get up and get going. They do get along exceptionally well, and we hope their companionship to each other will make a difference in their lives for years to come.
A true story as told by John Woodliff and Iva H. Darnall, Originally Published in the April, 2009 Issue of The Curly Commentator, the official publication of the Curly-Coated Retriever Club of America (CCRCA)