After Beau died the bosses wanted a new guarddog and sent me to the animal shelter in Appeville-Annebault to get one. I was told not to get an Alsatian, because they are all evil (-sigh-).
It was the most depressing animal shelter you can imagine. It was FULL and everybody was barking. There were around 100 dogs, half of them Alsatians, the other half small dogs and Tristan. He was a kastrated German Shorthaired Pointer, a dog for hunting. A hunting dog and sheep?
I took him though, he was looking so sadly. He had been in the shelter for 1 and a half year. His papers had been written in the shelter, and they had been optimistic about his age. They told me, they didn’t know anything about him. That’s how Tristan came to live with us in November 2004.
Tristan was the nearly perfect dog. He ignored the sheep completely. He ignored the other dogs. Phex loved Tristan and thought it’s the most sexy dog ever. Tristan didn’t mind that. He liked to snuggle and he definitely loved food, food also included the garbage bags.
We didn’t let him on the sofa in the beginning. He had a dog basket, but it wasn’t really a basket, it was soft. We called it his eggshell. After his eggshell got destroyed he conquered the sofa and from that day on it was HIS holy sofa. But he didn’t mind to share it with other beings, as long as they don’t get on his nerves.
He had long, thin, sharp teeth and could run very fast, he liked to catch rabbits and pigeons and was definitely the best hunter amoung our dogs.
Two or three months after we got him I recognized he gets epileptic seizures. I thought he would die and drove to the vet. The vet found finally out, that Tristan got shot in the head years ago. Maybe it was a hunting accident. The pellets were encapsulated in connective tissue and it was definitely too late to get them out. They were moving under his skin, tickling him, and he couldn’t scratch and causing pain, making him nervous. The usually very calm dog got seizures when the tickling became too much. We found a medication, Mysolane, a muscle-relaxant, the seizures went less and shorter, but it couldn’t heal him.
Tristan was not the best guarddog, he couldn’t bark. He was lazy, hated bad weather and was very nice. But it was good he wasn’t a good guarddog. Guarddogs and sheep doesn’t fit. At least he had dark fur and some people are scared of dark dogs.
When Miniputz got her kittens, they all slept on Tristan or next to him.
In 2008 the seizures became worse. The medication didn’t work anymore. I couldn’t sleep anymore, fearing he could get a seizure. He often climbed in my bed when he felt it would start soon. I sometimes could snuggle it away, but not always. His seizures didn’t occur just on one day, or one hour, he often had 20 seizures per night for three days. He was whimpering and pressing his hurting head against the wall.
On the evening of the 24th August 2008 he had another seizure and blood came out of his nose. I decided it was too much now, his suffering had to be ended. I went to the vet on the next day, she refused to put him asleep (french are very optimistic) but I convinced her. I held his paw when he died. I cried. We buried him in the park and put a stonepile on his grave.