Yes,there's a favorite dog...Brio. That's why she gets her own page, all to herself. In John's favorite phrase..."she's a character":
- At 6 months, she appeared in a college student's play. Threeperformances, multiple entrances each time. It only took one for her to realize SHE was the reason every one was there.
- Shortly after that, she visited the grade school classroom of a friend's son. Of course, the fire drill was arranged for her benefit...so she could greet all the students. And the class' thank you note to John invited him back any time..."but be sure to bring the puppy".
- Wherever we have lived and whichever kennel we have used, Brio was the star. When we picked her up, was she in a run in the back? Of course not, she's at the front desk. Heaven forbid, we dropped off the other dogsand took her with us; the staff always wanted to know where she was.
The stories go on and on.
Brio was shown by Pam and by professional handlers Larry Cornelius and Peter Green. She was bred first to CH Dundalk The Stroke of Midnight.
But it was Brio's second litter that was so significant for us. Bred to CH Hilltop's Diamond Gem, she produced two daughters, Addie and Morgen, who would go onto big things in the show ring and whelping box.
Brio was a poster child for doing annual testing. Shortly before she turned 10, her annual testing suggested the possibility of Addison's Disease. Follow up confirmed it and she went on daily medication...and thrived. We counted ourselves lucky...such dogs can be hard to diagnose and often the first time owners realize it is when the dog has an Addisonian crisis, a serious medical emergency; fortunately, Brio was always well.
Unfortunately, it wasn't for long. At 11 1/2, Brio was diagnosed with PLN, after years of good test results. Again, annual testing, which should never end, insured we were able to treat her and give her 6 months of a good quality of life. We lost her the same day her daughter, Morgen, died of PLN.
While having a dog with PLN who has produced PLN is heartbreaking, we are grateful to Dr. Meryl Littman and her summer assistant, Amy Smagala, at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine for their aid to our owners. Their interest and our wonderful owners' support means that this "cooperative family" will be the source of study and perhaps yield some answers for our breed.
Brio will live in our hearts forever.