This week is Moshuh's 11th birthday. We can't say exactly what day he was born on, so the vet guessed way back when and wah-lah. Happy Birthday Moshuh.
Moshuh is a rescue dog. He was discovered, along with his mother (most likely a pure-bred Chinese Shar-Pei) and a small litter of puppies on a closed off field in September of 2000. There was no way in or out except for a locked gate. The property owner denied owning or having any knowledge of the bitch and her puppies. A Shar-Pei rescue group took possession of the scared mom and her kids, holding them until the puppies were old enough to be adopted.
That's where I came in to the picture. That summer, our family had just lost our eight year old Chinese Shar-Pei, Pu Yin after a battle with cancer & amilydosis. Pu was a wonderful dog, and we decided we wanted another Shar-Pei. Being a member of the Chinese Shar-Pei Club of America, and the local Northern California Shar-Pei Club, I went through my contacts. They sent me to the rescue group, where I was given first pick from Mo's family.
Naturally, Mo and I fell in love with each other. He was so cute, and the only one in the litter that looked like a Chinese Shar-Pei. I was told to pick a name for the newest member of the family, so the rescue family could start using it on him right away. Sam and I thumbed through a Chinese-to-English book and settled on Moshuh Leung: roughly (as best as we could gather) 'magic dragon'.
Meanwhile, Jezzie, our cat was mourning Pu. The last month of Pu's life was especially tough on our cat. Pu and Jezzie (that is another story) were buddies, two guys who hung out all day, played (until Pu became too sick) and even slept on the same doggie bed. After Pu died, the cat wandered the house meowing, looking for his friend. Whoever said animals don't grieve is a damn fool.
On the day Moshuh (we ended up shortening his name), or Mo, came home, Jezzie wasn't sure who the interloper was. After a couple of days, he and Moshuh were getting along just fine. Jezzie is a year older than Moshuh, and back then the cat still liked to play. They would take turns chasing one another around the house. Jezzie taught Moshuh right off the bat, that the cat was the one in charge. Even after Mo grew up, the cat was the boss. During their 'rough' play, Mo was careful not to hurt Jezzie, but Jezzie took advantage of Moshuh. Jezzie has Maine Coon in his ancestry and it shows: he can take Mo down if he wants to.
Today, Moshuh's body isn't the svelte trim of a young dog. His skin has age spots, multiple lipomas and a few scars (from the cat). He needs help getting up on the couch some days. We know he has his aches & pains - and a bad back which caused a brief episode of hindquarter paralysis two years ago. Everyday is a gift when it comes to Moshuh, but the cat will probably out last all of us.
Happy Birthday Moshuh!