Our adorable land of misfits suffered a devastating blow to our little family on Tuesday 01/25/2022 — we said goodbye to our beloved Roscoe and gently helped him over that rainbow bridge and now he is free of pain: free of the seizures, the medication, the crippling arthritis, the 12g bullet lodged in his hip — he is free of the physical ailments that this world can cause. I take comfort in knowing that Roscoe had his homecoming on that particular date — because it was the one year anniversary of when we said goodbye to Miss. Maggie Mae (in fact, Roscoe crossed the bridge about the same time Maggie Mae did a year prior) and I very much believe that Maggie was calling our sweet, tired Roscoe home with her.
Roscoe had a tumultuous start to his life — my husband had met Roscoe while camping during the warmer months and Roscoe was the “campground dog” who was personable and sweet (and also wanted to guilt trip you out of some snacks!) and it was assumed that someone owned him.
Until the campground had let it known to my husband that no one claimed to own Roscoe and they suspect he was dumped off there. The campground raised concerns that Roscoe was “rabid” because he would have “spells” (which with proper veterinary care we found Roscoe was NOT rabid but had a seizure disorder — just like me!) and stated that at the end of the summer season they would be putting Roscoe “out” (they were going to shoot him).
Now my husband (for anyone who may know him) is a burly, completely tattooed, rough-around-the-edges biker of a man — he can look and sound intimidating! He had grown fond of Roscoe over that summer and was on the fence about taking Roscoe home — until Roscoe jumped in my husband’s lap only then my husband begrudged that he would take Roscoe home for ONE weekend to see how it went… that was well over ten years ago.
When I started dating my husband back in 2012 I knew that just as Maggie and I were a package deal that Mike (my husband) and Roscoe were a packaged deal — I also knew the golden rule if the dog didn’t like you then that was it for dating (as you can see I think Roscoe liked me!) and was greeted by a bouncing, spunky little dog who I mistook for a “min-pin” (and my husband who almost looked offended that I would even CALL Roscoe that — corrected me that Roscoe is a rat terrier).
Over the years we would joke that Roscoe was a scappy fella during his years on the “lam” when he was roaming that campground – the tiny knick in his satellite size ears we would gently outline with love… Roscoe’s scars, his seizures — everything good and bad about Roscoe we loved genuinely and with our entire being and his absence with the rest of the adorable misfit toys is being felt with dramatic impact on us all.
Then years ago (circa 2017?) Roscoe began to badly limp so being concerned pet parents we took him to his doctor for xrays only to discover there was a small 12g bullet lodged in Roscoes back hip — the doctor knew it was an old wound (there was no sign of trauma or skin breaking) and felt that it was in Roscoe’s best interest at that time to NOT remove it (by then he was about 10-11 years old and his health with not recommended for surgery) and that he does not feel it but on those “arthritis days” it can be managed with medications — so I call my husband (who was international for a business trip at that time) to let him know the news and what was found.
Twenty minutes later I had half of the neighborhood calling and texting me letting me know that justice WILL be served for Roscoe and that we would find whoever put that bullet in his hip!
(My husband missed the huge part of our conversation about the bullet was OLD and suspected from his days at the campground)
But that was just the inspiration Roscoe had on people — the neighborhood, our family — me.
About the same time I met Roscoe (again about 2012) is also the time that I started having seizures myself. It is a scary, surreal feeling to be in your 20’s with never an issue of seizures before to wake up in the middle of a crowded lecture hall in college surrounded by EMT’s, police, faculty — to be perfectly honest with you I was not prepared for that barrier — it was scary! But Roscoe seemed to help comfort me — I know on more than one rough seizure episode I would groggily stir and ask Mike for “my Roscoe” because it was one of the few things that helped soothe my chaotic mind post-seizure.
Roscoe helped shape my career, helped kick off this campaign! Roscoe was there when we took him and Maggie on vacation to the mountains, all of the holidays, marriage , new “kids” — Roscoe was always there, a staple in our home.
I can easily say there will never be another dude as cool and amazing as Roscoe. Roscoe is the epitome of what we are trying to accomplish with our “campaign” — if Mike had not taken a chance on Roscoe (but let’s be honest, Roscoe already had stolen Mike’s heart by then!)– Roscoe who was roaming by himself at a campground, Roscoe who they believed was rabid but just needed his seizures under control, Roscoe who had a bullet lodged in his hip because someone tried to shoot him — Roscoe was an older black colored dog (which unfortunately are all strikes against him).
We will forever be advocates for dudes like Roscoe. We want to be the voices for the misunderstood — whether they are neurologic, maybe not aesthetically pleasing, missing limbs or vision — they are ALL worthy of love, the safe haven of a home of their own and a family that will be patient with them and be an advocate or ally for them.
So in honor of Roscoe we are all asking if you please take a chance on a less-adoptable pet (whether they are in a shelter, foster program, or homeless), donate to your local dog pound or shelter, “pay-it-forward” to a handipet, rescue or other animal program.